Friday after work, I headed home and Adriene was packed and ready to go; I had put most of my things in the rig on Thursday, and my last few things were in the back of the car already. We keep the coach pretty much "ready for take-off" all the time, with the exception of food, and minimal clothing, I usually get the refrigerator cooling the night prior, so that we are ready to head out the following day. We grabbed the few things Adriene had, along with a few bags of food, and we were heading to the motorhome, so that we could get out of town before the major "rush-hour" traffic got too bad. It wasn’t too long, and we had everything loaded. We realized that the refrigerator had turned off for some reason during the day, so Adriene took the car to get a bag of ice to put in the cooler, while I got the motorhome ready. By the time she returned with the ice, I had the refrigerator working again, but we used our large cooler and the ice to keep our food cool until the refrigerator was cooled down. I pulled the coach out of storage, got the "toad" hooked up on the back, and we were ready to hit the road. We were on the road heading west by about 5 o'clock, expecting to be at Johnson Creek, in Ingram, Texas, by about 6:30.
Saturday morning, we got up, had some breakfast, and I headed over to the office to "settle our account". It was then that I realized that we were at the right place, at the right time; our assignment was revealed to me. I had the pleasure of meeting Angelique; she was managing the main office. As she was processing my payment, I noticed the scripture on the wall behind her; Philippians 4:13 - I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me. I told her that was one of my favorite scriptures, and as I often do, I asked her if there was any type of church services provided at the campground. It was then that I shared with her about our ministry and calling to campground ministry; I also gave her and another gentleman in the office, a few of our ministry cards. She was so excited to see what we were doing. Once she finished with the business at hand, she told me about Chapel in the Hills, the on-site church services, and also shared with me that the owners (Tom and Lisa) are devoted Christians, and the campground was built on biblical principles. Knowing that we are also believers, and now knowing our mission, she also shared with me an overarching prayer need for the owners of the park. Tom, was in need of divine healing in his body, and we were asked join them in prayer for his healing. I began praying immediately, and after leaving the office, I started to walk the grounds and pray for the souls that God would entrust to us during our stay. I also took the opportunity to take a look at the “little chapel” on the grounds that the congregation had outgrown; I also went over to the new “Chapel”; which is a converted western dance hall. I was peeking in the window, when one of my new brothers opened it up for me to go in and take a look. Before leaving, I took to opportunity to pray for Chapel in the Hills, and the services to take place there in the morning. I got back to our rig, and shared with Adriene about our assignment; not knowing that God had even more in store for us.
One of the great things about living in RV parks is that sitting outside is a great way to meet people; while outside, I noticed that a few of the rigs had “yard pelicans” outside of their coaches, and I was reminded that there was an RV Club known by their pelicans. Low and behold, I was right; the Texas Boomers were at Johnson Creek for an RV Club rally, and from what I found out, there were about thirty people there for the rally. I had the opportunity to meet a few of them. We haven’t joined any local clubs yet, but we may at some point. Our goal is to be on the Campground Mission Field fulltime, so local clubs don’t fit very well into our vision. We are however part of a few nationwide clubs (FMCA, Good Sam, and Escapees).
As I often do, I began to walk the campground, praying for the residents, and taking pictures of the area; capturing memories to reflect on. Johnson Creek RV Resort has a pecan orchard on it, but I never did go through the orchard to see if there were any pecans laying on the ground; I really don’t even know when pecans are in season, but it did bring back childhood memories of my siblings and I picking up bags of pecans in my grandparents backyard. They had a “massive” pecan tree, and we spent hours picking up pecans when we went to their house in North Carolina to visit. Now that I look back at it, I think my parents and grandparents could have broken some “child labor laws” with that one. :-) It was a nice, quiet evening; we watched a little TV and called it a night, with high expectation for the chapel service in the morning.
We got up early enough on Sunday to have a little breakfast, and a time of devotion before we started getting ready to head out for service. We decided to wear our Altar to Altar Ministries shirts, which always give us an opportunity to share what God has called us to do with others. The service started at 9:45 and it was 5 minutes walking distance from our site to Chapel in the Hills. When we got the front door of the “new chapel”, Lynette, the Co-Pastor, met us at the door; then introduced us to Pastor Roy. He recognized us right away. I’m not sure if it was our ministry shirts, or if he had been on our website, because he had our card in his front pocket; one of the brothers had passed our card on to him. They welcomed us with open arms and as we typically do, we headed close to the front, to find a seat.
Service opened up with a time of praise and worship; we felt very comfortable because we knew every song that the praise team sang; the words were provided on screen, but I was able to close my eyes, sing the songs, and enjoy myself as the presence of the Lord was ushered into the house. As service progressed, Pastor Roy was praying for a couple of families; one of which was going on the road fulltime. He then invited Adriene and I to come up; the Lord had led him to pray for us, and for the next level of ministry that the Lord was leading us in to. The Lord met us at the altar, the Pastor Roy confirmed what God had been placing in our spirits. I was so grateful, that he yielded to the leading of the Holy Spirit, to call us up, and pray over us; I think I may have been weeping from that time on, until the end of the service, because I knew that we were exactly where God wanted us to be, at the right time. We met the Lord at the altar of Chapel in the Hills. Pastor Roy preached a message from Mark 10:46-52, and confirmed my prayer for both physical, and spiritual healing in the house.
Once we got back “home”, we relaxed for a while and waited for the Dallas Cowboys/Greenbay Packers game to come on. That was a really good game, but Dallas lost out in a “cliff-hanger” at the end. Adriene is a pseudo Packers fan, so that made the game even more interesting. Before the game, I said the Cowboys would win by 3, Adriene said the Packers would win by 3 – the Packer won by 4; oh well …
Later in the evening, Adriene and I went out to “walk the grounds”. After I took her over to look at the “Little Chapel”, we were walking down the road, and a gentleman called to us to get our attention. He had been in service earlier; his name was Paul. As Paul approach us, he said “tell me about Altar to Altar”. We began to share with him the mission and vision of Altar to Altar, and shared the importance of an experience at the altar. Paul then, shared with us. While we were sharing with Paul, God showed up again. We saw a lady riding a golf cart down the driveway of the private residence; it was Lisa, co-owner of the park. She rode over to us with her 2 dogs in-tow. We began to introduce ourselves to her, but she already knew who we were; someone had passed one of our ministry cards to her and her husband Tim. Yes, this is the same Tim, that was in need of a healing in his body.
After Lisa introduced herself to us, and shared their prayer needs with us, she asked us if we would like to go back to the house with her, and pray for her husband; without hesitation, we said yes. She went back to the house to let Tim know that we were coming. God opened an opportunity for us to go in, fellowship, and lay hands on Tim’s need; knowing that by the stripes of Jesus, healing was going to take place in Tim’s body. Tim has a great sense of humor, and also has a testimony that God is healing his body. By the time we left, it had gotten dark outside; Adriene turned on her iPhone flashlight, and we made our way back to the rig. God is so faithful; we are so glad to be able to serve as the hands and feet of Jesus.
Unfortunately, it was Monday morning (Columbus Day), and it was time for us to leave Johnson Creek RV Resort. I was outside beginning to prepare for departure; while outside walking around the rig, I started talking with my neighbor for a while, then I look up, and there was Paul walking down the street towards us. He said that he had been walking around the park looking for us. That confirmed my need to get us some type of signage to put at our campsite. Paul thanked us again for our time there, and welcome us back at any time. He also allowed me to pray for him before leaving. Paul has actually inspired me to be more, and do more.
Once I got everything finished up outside, and Adriene had finished up inside, it was time to build an altar. I put it at our site as a symbol of the visitation of God; both at our site, and at Johnson Creek. Adriene and I closed out our time there in prayer, and we were pulling out of our site by check-out time (11 o’clock)
And There We Built An Altar …