Supreme Ambition Ministries

To Know Christ and to Make Him Known – Philippians 3:10

MY JOURNEY 10

oasislogohomepage.jpgOASIS IN THE DESERT!
It was a beautiful but cool day in central Georgia that November morning, when the three of us left Warner Robbins to take our trek south to Ormond Beach.  Even in Georgia the smell of Fall was in the air, and as strange as it may sound that smell brought hope to my heart.  Little did we know what awaited us in the next months and how much our faith was to be put to the test.  On the other hand ,illuding our imagination or fondest  thoughts, was the treasure which was immediately ahead of us at a little spiritual, watering hole called Oasis Christ Fellowship.  Arising out of the desert of their own lives, Pastor Gary and Beverly Powell had birthed a body of people with a vision to help wounded Christians from all walks of life.  Their burden was then and remains today simply to give a ‘cup of cold water in Christ’s name’.  Rolling into Central Florida that day were three (3) parched and dry pilgrims in desperate need of an oasis.  We had come to help them for a few weeks.  However, in the precious plan of an omniscient God, we were the ones to be the primary beneficiaries of something called, HELP.  gary-powell.gif
The plan was for me to basically take over the ministry for about eight (8) weeks so Gary, Beverly and their three (3) wonderful boys could get away from the stresses and pressures  of ministry and also the effects of trying to build a new sactuary debt-free.  Anyone who knows Pastor Gary would tell you he may literally be at death’s door but he would set aside his own life, health and plans to help another, who he thought was in great need.  It has been said there are two types of people in the world: givers or takers.  Gary and Beverly Powell are of the former type.  Incidentally, if you are greatly concerned about your weight, I do not recommend Beverly’s kitchen.  The lady can definitely put the food on the table…and she loves doing it.
The Powells quickly made a place for our son, Nathan, giving him his own room with a king-sized bed.  In return I think the Powell family is still entertained over the memory of some of the comedic sayings and facial expressions of Nathan, during his visit.  The provisions for Kathi and me were equally as wonderful.  The first three weeks we were there we stayed in a couple of different places owned by people in the Church which they offered rent-free.  Finally, another family generously offered us a ‘motherinlaw cottage’ next to their home and we spent the remainder of our time there in this very comfortable place.
As I said, the plan was for me to minister so Gary and family could go away to rest.  However, Gary’s nervous system was in such a bad state that going away would not have done him any good.  He needed a touch from our Lord in the deepest part of his psyche before he could even think of going away.  Gary and several of his men have met for many years early in the morning for prayer.  Hungry to know the Lord, I joined them for those sacred times of communion.  On one such morning Pastor Gary was lying on the steps which lead to the stage in the sancturay.  He was exhausted!  He was trembling and barely able to hold himself together.  I felt it would be good, if the men could gather around him and ask for a miracle of healing for his nervous system.  As we prayed God did a glorious thing.  Folks, more quickly than I can tell you and in a more perfect way than could ever be described, the Spirit of God reached down from heaven and laid His healing hand upon Pastor Gary.  Looking at his face, he appeared to be a different man.  He looked younger.  The trembling had ceased.  He was ready…for…VACATION!  In a few days he and his family took off for the south Carribean.  When they returned the stress and pressure was gone…at least for a while.
heart-love.jpgSeldom in our lives have we been loved and appreciated as we were those eight (8) weeks at Oasis Christ Fellowship.  We made friends to whom we are still close today. Names such as  Luke, Hill, Davis, O’Connor are only a few among many, whose memory we hold dear in our hearts.
While at Oasis, I was able to preach to some of the most spiritually hungry people found anywhere.  The more deeply I would delve into ‘knowing Christ and making him known’,  they seemed to want more.  I felt like an old hound dog on the trail of the biggest coon in the world and it seemed as though I nearly had him treed.  (It’s a coon-hunter thing!  You may not understand.).
Gary and I did a lot of minstry while I was there, but coaching a YMCA basketall team was one of the most rewarding.  Gary’s two oldest boys were middle-school age at the time. They were on our team and there was another boy, George, from the Church who was also on the team.  The rest of our players were ‘castoffs’; players nobody else wanted.  We had one or two boys, who, at first, could not even catch the ball.  Gary and I took this team on as a project, teaching them a few basic plays and practicing some simple offensive and defensive maneuvers.  Although our talent was not the best, I want you to know, to the glory of God,  our team was the champion of our age-group.  I’ve done a lot of coaching in my day but that experience was one of the best for me; maybe because I got to do it with one of the dearest and most faithful men I’ve ever known.
beverly-hillbillies.jpgWell, all too quickly, our time at Oasis was completed.  The salary stopped.  Oasis kept us on for two additional weeks, but once again…we had no place to go.  Gary wanted us to stay at Oasis, though they had no salary to offer us.  I could have gotten a job teaching and we could have made a good home there, but the call upon me to ‘know him’ and preach his unsearchable riches  was strong, and seemed to urge me onward.  Finally, we got a call from a pastor in St. Louis, MO., who was going on vacation for two weeks and asked, if I would come and stay in his home and tend his flock, while he was away. Since we had no where else to go and the door seemed to be open, we loaded our car to the brim and started for St. Louis. I think we surely must have looked a little like the Clampets.  Not really, I suppose, but it sure seemed like it.  The difference was the Clampets had a home to go to. I guess…well…we were now officially ‘homeless’…  We will never forget our Oasis in the Desert!
The adventure continues…

September 4th, 2008 Posted by | Biographical | 4 comments

4 Responses to “MY JOURNEY 10”

  1. Another good experience. I love to read of your walking with our Lord.

  2. Again, thank you for sharing your journey as I believe it gives hope to others who are in need of an oasis.

  3. Terry and I are thankful for your continuing journey and looking forward to more!

  4. I have such fond memories from that time. You’re right about Nathan! In that short time I learned so many nathanisms and have many stories.

    thanks for investing in us boys. i still can’t believe we beat that team. that was intense. good times….