The Gift of Salvation

And she shall bring forth a son and thou shalt call His name Jesus for He shall save His people from their sins. – Matthew 1:21

In the early 60’s I attended Good News Club one day a week right after school let out. Good News Club was held in the home of a local Pastor and his family. They lived two doors up from us in the village of New London. Good News Club consisted of a Bible story, singing hymns and Bible memory.  Matthew 1:21 was my first memory verse.  Its deeply ingrained in my mind and in my heart.

Now that I am much older I have come to appreciate the reality of this verse as this gift of salvation has radically changed my life. This gift is the greatest gift ever given. The gift that keeps on giving into eternity.

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son that whosoever believeth in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life” John 3:16.  

This is our hope that every woman that enters our program will come to know Jesus as their Savior and make Him Lord of their lives. Its not enough just to know “about” Him but one must know Him “personally” in order for life change to happen. Christianity is more than just religion its a personal relationship that impacts your daily life. I have been told that the difference between religion and a relationship is that religion is man reaching up to God trying to earn His favor and a relationship is God coming down to man and accepting Him just as He is.  I am so thankful that Jesus accepted me just as I am but he loved me enough that he didn’t leave me there.  To know Him is to love him and to love Him is to obey Him. Its then that we see God in action and our faith becomes stronger. Please pray for us as we reach out with the love of Christ to women who need to experience Christ in a fresh new way as they work toward financial stability.

We again thank God for each one of you who continue to support this ministry. We raised over $2,500 at our Christmas at the Oaks Holiday Bazaar and many of you have sent in year end financial donations in which we are grateful for.

If you desire to donate supplies to our ministry this holiday season we are asking for you to consider Laundry Detergent, Fabric Softener, Bleach, Bathroom Tissue, Paper Towels, or Dusting spray.  We are currently well stocked on personal hygiene items. Thank you!!

We are still accepting resume’s for 2018 Residential House Managers. This is a wonderful opportunity to reside in a beautiful home and no cost to you.  We are trusting that God will reveal the right person at the right time. Please call Robin at 484-368-7268 or send your resume to info@oxfordoaksministry.com. Thank you!!

The Board of Directors of the Oaks Ministry wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas as together we celebrate the greatest gift ever given, the birth of Jesus Christ our Lord!!!

Robin Martin, President

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Does Time Really Fly?

I can’t believe its been two months since I’ve updated this blog. Yes time flies!!  Scripture says that our lives are a mist, a vapor, we are here today and gone tomorrow. As I look back over the years, as I grow older I understand more fully the above description of life here on earth.

I, Robin spent last week at the beach with my five wonderful sisters. It was a much needed break from work and ministry, but I returned home on Friday in fast gear with much to do.  I can honestly report that things are well with the Oaks Ministry. I am so thankful for the wonderful Board and faithful helpers and sponsors of this ministry. Without all of you, we could not do what we do.  The role you play is very important.

Today the Oaks Ministry board had  three events to attend.  Kay, Jannett and I attended Christian Life Center in New London’s Fall Festival.  This was a great opportunity to share about our ministry and also sell donated items to raise funds for our cause. We thank CLC for the invitation and their support of this ministry.

Meanwhile another Board Member, John, attended a Bridges out of Poverty Seminar at Bethany Church.  A seminar to help us understand how to help others overcome poverty and work toward a brighter future. (that’s is one aspect of our program)

Kathy, another Board Member hosted a Tea Party at Oaks 1 with women from Andrews Bridge Mennonite Church. We thank them for their interest and support of this ministry. PJ our Secretary was busy at home getting a mailing list organized for our ministry. Can you believe that its been two years come February since the Oaks Ministry opened its doors and we are just now getting a formal mailing list?  PJ had her work cut out for her taking two years of unorganized documents and compiling them into a very need chart. Thank you PJ!! (be looking for some mail in the near future)

Herr’s, Inc. blessed us by donating a 2015 Chevy Equinox for our residents to use to go to and from their places of employment and other ministry related appointments. This is a huge answer to prayer and we thank Herr’s for their generosity. Our community is so blessed to have such a generous, kind family business supporting the many great causes in our communities.

We were also blessed by Peggy Russell of ACE (Anti Human Trafficking non profit). Peggy took the financial responsibility to have Air Conditioning installed at Oaks 2. Alger Oil gave the Oaks Ministry a huge discount to help our cause and we thank them for that. George of Southern Chester County Electric did all the electrical work free of charge. Although AC is considered a luxury by some, for the Oaks (2) Ministry home in town it is a necessity to help our residents feel safe and secure. In the summer months, many of our residents do not want the windows left open for fear of intrusion or lack of privacy.  God continues to amaze me with his provision for our ministry. Its far more than we could ever think or even imagine. We thank God for all of his wonderful people who truly care about the hurting women we minister to. People like you!

As our ministry grows so does our budget.  With an automobile comes added expenses, commercial insurance, maintenance, gas.  With AC comes added expense meaning higher electric bills and maintenance. Another added item on our budget this year will be hopefully weekly professional Christian counseling for all of our residents. God recently revealed to us that this is a missing link in our program. Many of the women have mental health issues caused by past hurts, habits or hang-ups that are deeply rooted and keeping them in bondage to some degree. Although the Oaks Ministry helps to find jobs and gives financial training as well as spiritual training we are not equipped to do what a licensed Christian Counselor can do, therefore we find it a necessity to supply this much needed service.  We are currently looking into different agencies and related costs.  Another added expense.  Yes I can smile, for I know our God will supply all of our needs according to His riches in glory. . it is written….

Please keep our ministry in prayer. Currently we have one residential opening in Oaks 2.  Oaks 1 is full. We have an immediate need for a House Manager for Oaks 2. If interested in the job description and details, contact Robin at 484-368-7268. Pray for us as we plan Christmas at the Oaks. This fund raising event will be held at Oaks 2 this year on December 1st and 2nd. We are accepting donations of baked goods, craft items, gift items and Christmas decorations to sell.  Mark your calendar and look for more details to follow.

Last but certainly not least, if you would like to make a year-end donation to our cause, please send your check to:

The Oaks Ministry                                                                                                                                290 Bethel Road                                                                                                                                    Oxford, Pa  19363

WE APPRECIATE YOU and THANK YOU IN ADVANCE…..FOR YOUR SUPPORT!

The Oaks Ministry is a 501c3 non profit and your donation is tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law.

 

 

 

Two New Board Members

The Oaks Ministry wants to introduce to you John Wallace and Sheryl Hawk the newest members of our Board.  John is a long time member of Bethany Presbyterian Church and is excited to be part of our ministry. I often say it takes a special man to be part of a woman’s ministry and John is that man. He helps out with the “man” jobs around the houses and shares words of wisdom at our meetings. So thankful to have John on our team.

Sheryl Hawk attends Oxford Church of the Nazarene and has accepted the responsibility of the position of Treasurer of our organization. She brings with her a vast amount of knowledge and skills that we believe will help our ministry tremendously. Not only does she have banking experience but also has experience in fund raising and grant writing. We will keep Sheryl very busy with The Oaks Ministry. We are also thankful to  have Sheryl on our team.

Both of these Board Members are a reminder of the goodness of our God. He provides just what we need, just when we need it.  They both have hearts of compassion and wholeheartedly believe in our mission. We welcome them both and look forward to working along side of them for as long as the Lord allows.

Please keep our Board in your prayers.  We love the Lord and desire to run this ministry with integrity and transparency in order to honor God in every way.  We need His wisdom to know the best steps to take to move forward and when are we to take those steps? Our two homes will soon be full and then we’ll have to turn away women in need. At that time we will begin to pray, effectively and fervently for God to provide another home to meet our needs. Of course with every home comes more expenses.  We know that God will provide. If you wish to contribute to our cause, please send your tax exempt donation to:

Oxford Oaks Ministry                                                                                                                           290 Bethel Road                                                                                                                                     Oxford, Pa.  19363

We thank you in advance for your support. Together we can make a difference!!

 

A Managers Message from Oaks 2

I had a very hard childhood and adult life.  I knew there was a God. I went to church every Sunday till my 2nd husband would not let me or the children go.  I started to forget about God till the Amish came into my life.  Yes I was working for the Amish for 15 years. The last year I worked for them I was always dizzy and started passing out.  It got to the point that I couldn’t drive or stand very long so we agreed that I must stop working. I had to move out of my apartment so I moved in with my sister and her boyfriend.  About three weeks after I moved in, I moved out because of things that they were doing.  I then moved in with my brother for about 6 months and he wanted me to move out so I went to a homeless shelter.  Six weeks later I had an interview with Robin and two other ladies.  When I stepped in the Oaks House, I felt the presence of God throughout the house.  It didn’t scare me or frighten me.  It was like God was welcoming me.  I knew right then and there that God would take care of me.  I know a lot of people are giving the Oaks Ministry the respect they deserve. I am so blessed now to be the manager of Oaks 2.  I have become so much closer to God and I want to walk in his footsteps forever. I want to thank the Oaks Ministry for everything they have done for me. – Vickie Chandler

The Oaks Ministry thanks Vickie for the work that she does for us at Oaks 2.  Our vision is for many houses to help women in need, and our plan is to use graduates from our program to manage each home the Lord provides.  Vickie can relate to the women in our program for it wasn’t long ago she was where many of them are.  She is a living testimony of the difference God makes in a person’s life when they take the program seriously and learn to trust God completely.

Someone recently asked me when will your 3rd house open? I stated when both houses are full and we are turning women away, I will begin to pray for God to meet the need according to His will.  I think it would be awesome if God continued to provide homes for our cause through the Body of Christ the church.  Something to ponder….and of course pray about.

We also thank Debbie Kinney for the wonderful job she did re-designing our website and creating a new logo. Our Board is thrilled with the work she did for us and we hope you like it!

The Oaks Ministry thanks all of you for your prayers and support of this ministry. We could not do it without the faithful men and women that God has called to partner with us.

PS:  The Oaks Ministry recently accepted two new members on our Board. The next update will be introducing them to you….stay tuned!!

 

A Manager’s Message from Oaks 1

I will always be grateful to my God and Father for guiding me to this ministry.  He has blessed this ministry so much and has brought so many wonderful people to this ministry also.  I have been so blessed to be given this opportunity as House Manager.  All of the women that have come here I can very easily relate to since I had been through so many trials myself.  When I tell them about  my different trials they open up to me about theirs.  My Father has taught me to show grace, kindness and patience with the women.  I try to shine God’s Light through me so these women will follow my example.  It is so rewarding when the women grow spiritually and become more confident of themselves. With all of the different resources in this ministry the women are able to get back on their feet and become financially stable.  We have all remained sisters in Christ so they gain lifetime friends.  This ministry definitely gives most of these ladies a lasting change of life for the good. – Paula Swain

The Oaks Ministry Board of Directors appreciates all Paula does to help us help others.  She is a gift from God to us and to the women in our program.

We are still looking for a person to invite 6 friends to join them at a tea party on Saturday, June 17th from 1-3 PM.  If you are feeling the tug, “I can do that!”, please contact Robin at 484-368-7268. No charge for the tea and the fellowship. Free will donations are appreciated but not required.

Thanks you for your support!

Robin Martin, President and Founder of The Oaks Ministry

Abiding in Him

John 15 is one of my favorite chapters in the Bible.  The whole chapter is written in red, meaning the words recorded are the words of Christ. Christ knew that he would soon be leaving this world and the disciples would be left behind until his appointed time. Jesus was reminding them of things they would need to know in order to carry on with their mission on earth. The message he gave them is also true for us today.

Jesus reminded his followers that they need to abide (stay connected) to Him, and if they did they would bear much “fruit”. He also stated that if they did not bear much fruit they would not be useful to Him and fulfill their holy purpose. He reminded them that even if they stayed connected to Him that they would go through difficult times (pruning), but their difficult times would enable them to become even more “fruitful”.  In the book of Galatians, chapter 5, scripture reveals that the spiritual fruit in a Christians life is “love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, kindness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control”. Now who wouldn’t want more of those characteristics in their lives? If we do, we must stay connected to Jesus. How do we stay connected? By spending time in His Word, the Bible. By spending time in prayer and meditation. By living according to His word and walking in obedience. To learn to love Him, and trust Him more and more every day and by doing so we will experience the sweet fruit of salvation.

This is a message that the Oaks Ministry shares with our residents. It is our desire that the women entering our program will grow deeper in their relationship with Christ or come to know Christ in a way that truly satisfies and produces good fruit in their lives.

As we work with hurting women, we have been blessed to see them grow, blossom and become new creations in Christ. To see God heal the brokenhearted, to set free those that are in bondage, to comfort those who mourn by placing on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They become new creations in Christ, a planting of the Lord for the display of His splendor. (Isaiah 61:1-3) Just last weekend we had a Benefit Luncheon and one of our previous residents shared her testimony. Jennifer is not the same person she was when she entered our program in Feb. 2016.  She is a beautiful example of what God can do and an inspiration to others. To God be the Glory!!

Please keep The Oaks Ministry in your prayers as we strive to show the love of Christ to women in need.  We thank God for you who have come along side of us in this faith journey. We know that together we can make a difference in the lives of the women God sends our way.

There are many ways you can help us help others. If you would like more information, please contact us at 484-368-7268 or visit our website at http://www.oxfordoaksministry.com.

Never Underestimate the Power of an OAK!! (Isaiah 61: 3b)

Last week I received a beautiful Hallmark card and I’m sharing it’s message with you.

It is a reminder that life is sometimes hard but when we are rooted in Christ, we will be able to withstand any problem we encounter and will come out victorious!!

“THE OAK TREE” A Message of Encouragement

A mighty wind blew night and day.  It stole the oak tree’s leaves away.  Then snapped its boughs and pulled its bark, until the oak was tired and stark.  But still the oak tree held its ground, while other trees fell all around.  The weary wind gave up and spoke, “How can you still be standing, Oak?”  The Oak tree said, “I know that you can break each branch of mine in two, Carry every leaf away, Shake my limbs, and make me sway.  But I have roots stretched in the earth, Growing stronger since my birth.  You’ll never touch them, for you see, They are the deepest part of me.  Until today, I wasn’t sure Of just how much I could endure.  But now I’ve found, with thanks to you, I’m stronger than I ever knew”.

Isaiah 61:3…..and they shall be called “Oaks of Righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of His splendor”. 

Ministry Update:

Thank-you to the ladies who are co-hosting a tea party in April to help raise funds for our ministry.  We have spaces available in June. If interested in helping us out, please call and make your reservation soon. 484-368-7268

Saturday, May 20th, 11 AM we are planning a Ladies Luncheon at the Melrath Residence in Nottingham.  Theme: Portraits of Women  This is about women coming together to help women. This is a private party and seating is limited. We still have 3 tables of four left that are in need of a sponsor. All proceeds benefit The Oaks Ministry. Call 484-368-7268 for more information.

We are looking for a few more ladies to serve on a Financial Team to help our residents, in addition to a few ladies to be an assistant to our manager and spend a few hours week with our residents at our Waterway location while our manager, Paula is working her part-time job. All positions are on a volunteer basis.

Mark your calendar for an upcoming yard sale on September 8th and 9th. We will be accepting donations. More information to come.

We currently have  openings in our program for women in need of transitional housing and faith based support services.  Applications on on our House Policy and Procedure page of this website.

The Oaks Ministry Team Thanks all of you for your prayers and your support!!

 

Happy Endings and New Beginnings

This past month has been emotional for me.  Having our first graduates move out was an emotional surprise.  When Jen moved out early February, I shared with a friend that I felt like I was dropping my daughter off to college for the first time and then a little over a month later Anita followed and so did the emotions.  Even though we know that they are where they belong, we will miss having them in house.  They both want to fill out Volunteer Applications so they can give back by helping us help others as we have helped them.  How sweet is that!!

Vicky came into the program at the same time as the others, but because she is heavily involved in the ministry in a different role, by managing Oaks 2, it feels as if she hasn’t left.  By the way, she is doing a great job!

The Oaks Ministry has had a positive influence in their lives and has helped them overcome some of the obstacles that were holding them back.  We thank all of you again for your support.  Together we CELEBRATE a HAPPY ENDING and a NEW BEGINNING for our first residents.  To God Be the Glory!!!!

This is also a HAPPY ENDING and a NEW BEGINNING for Oaks 1, as our ladies have moved on and we are eagerly awaiting the second group of women that God will bring to us to help in their time of need.  We are busy getting the rooms ready and reviewing our programs.  If you know of anyone that may need what the Oaks Ministry offers, please have them fill out the application online and send in.  W have openings in both houses.

A few things we are asking you to pray about as we move forward:

  1. Greg Gouty, our treasurer’s term has ended and he has chosen not to renew it. Therefore we are looking for a replacement.  We thank God for Greg’s time with us. He helped to get this ministry up and running and has done an incredible job at handling our finances and keeping excellent records.  We are trusting that God will reveal the one who He has chosen to replace Him.
  2. We have discovered that handling the finances of 6 women is too much of a workload for our Financial Adviser to do alone, therefore we are looking to form a “Financial Team”.  We are looking for 5 female volunteers to work directly with the ladies on a one on one basis.  If you enjoy working with numbers and helping others, this would be a position for you to consider.  You would meet with your resident on a weekly or bi-weekly basis depending on how often they receive a pay check.
  3. We are also looking for ladies that would like to help raise funds to support this ministry by co-hosting a Tea Party.  This is a great way to entertain friends with no responsibility, no expense, no work, just FUN! (See “Tea Party” page on website for more information)
  4. We are also looking for volunteers to give of their time to come to Oaks 1 on a regular basis and spend time with our ladies when our residential house manager is working at her PT job.  This could be as little as 1 day a week for 4 hours. Your responsibility would be to lead group devotions in the morning and oversee the responsibilities of our in house program.  It would be a great way to develop friendships with our ladies and encourage them in their walk with the Lord.

If you or anyone you know might be interested in helping out with any of the above,please contact Robin at 484-368-7268 or e-mail questions at info@oxfordoaksministry.com

Note:  Sorry for the double e-mail for those who liked our page. For some reason it did not send the updated version of the blog.

 

 

More than we could imagine….

Ephesians 3: 20 states “now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus thorough out all generations, for ever and ever! Amen

A month ago we asked for you to pray for God to provide a place for our ladies to reside after completion of the Oaks program in January. We thank you again for your prayers that moved the heart of God to provide a beautiful apartment in a beautifully restored house in Coatesville. Both of our ladies will be sharing the apartment and expenses.

Never in our wildest imagination did we think that the ladies would be moving into a place even more beautiful than the one they were leaving, but they are.  It amazes me how God not only provided them with a beautiful, affordable place to live but also He is providing them with everything they need to begin again through the loving donations of His wonderful people.

Please continue to keep these  women in your prayers as I’m sure they will face much temptation being out from under our umbrella therefore we am claiming the following verse for them that “He who began a good work in them will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus”. (Philippians 1:6)

When our first three ladies entered the program February 2016, only one had a vehicle. They had no jobs,  no home and very little to no income. After a year in our program, they all have jobs, vehicles, money in the bank and a place to live but most importantly they have a greater understanding of the love our Father has for them and are learning to trust Him more and more as they see Him at work in their lives. They have also built strong, healthy relationships with other women that we hope will continue a lifetime as we walk together in this journey called life. To God Be The Glory!!

The Oaks Ministry once again thanks each one of you that have partnered with us in many different ways.  Physically and spiritually and financially. Together we can make a positive difference in the lives of women in need. All for His glory!!!

Spread the word that if anyone knows of any women facing difficult times that are in a transitional state of life that might be interested in our program, to fill out an application online at (www.oxfordoaksministry.com)  and send it in. For more information call 484-368-7268.