Ruth in PantryRuth and her husband first became acquainted with The Salvation Army through the Angel Tree program. For several years they adopted children off the tree, providing gifts for Christmas. Then they learned about the opportunity to help distribute the gifts to the families and fell in love.

“When we went to that first Angel Tree Distribution, it was really like, ‘they are doing things in the community. The Salvation Army is making a difference right here,’” Ruth recounted.

Ruth’s family has always been committed to service, striving to be the “boots on the ground” with their time and talents. Her husband served in the Air Force and Ruth would use her artistic abilities to organize events to bless the troops overseas.

With the recent troop drawdown, Ruth and her husband felt a call to serve their local community.

Her motto: “Just giving all the way around. Trying to live more generously and make a difference in people’s lives.”

And Ruth does just that. Going above and beyond her calling of being a “volunteer,” Ruth ministers to everyone she meets with her kindness.

“Even in traffic you can be kind. It’s just some small kindness every day that might make a difference in someone’s life. We don’t know what they’re going through or why they’re in a hurry. But if we open the door for them, or let them out in traffic, give them a smile and welcome them, it may make a big difference in their day.”

Ruth’s willingness to serve people shines through as she volunteers at The Salvation Army of Norman answering the phone, organizing the pantry, serving the evening meal and purchasing items the shelter guests need.

“The Salvation Army doesn’t care who you are or what’s going on in your life. They’re here to help you if they can,” Ruth shared. “That’s important because God called us to love in His name.”

Ruth’s heart of service doesn’t come from a need for attention or recognition, but from her love for God and His people.

“There are days I don’t feel like I do a lot around here but sometimes it’s just one kind word to somebody may be all that I was required to do that day. I keep saying that it’s not about me. It’s about God and His glory. I often pray that when I come here to remind myself it’s not about me. It’s about Him and His kingdom and making a difference. That’s important.”

For others thinking about volunteering, Ruth’s advice: “At least give it a try. You never know where it’ll lead.”

To join Ruth as a volunteer at The Salvation Army in Norman, call us today at 405-364-9910.