Hope International Ministries

Staying the Course

by Eric E. Subano

HIM Bangkok Oasis Church’s recently concluded Encounter Camp is costly but worth it.

How would you spend a week-long holiday? 

Some might go for a beach getaway. Others probably couldn’t wait to get out of the country, especially after the pandemic. And maybe the rest are just content spending that whole week taking a well-deserved rest at home.

For twelve years, HIM Bangkok Oasis Church has been holding our Encounter Camp during the long-awaited Songkran break, a week-long holiday filled with festivities and water splashing here in Thailand. For the rest of the country, it’s a time to enjoy a lengthy break from work. For locals, it’s time to gather with family. But for HIM-Oasis, it’s a time to gather as one church to receive from the Lord.

It can be tough, especially for our Thai brethren who decide to go to the camp. Some of them are questioned by their families as to why they’re prioritising this over a family reunion. But they resolve themselves to join Encounter because they know that the Lord pours so much out during this four-day period.

And it was no different this year. The 2023 Encounter Camp, which concluded a few weeks ago, was focused on the theme “Remnants”. For four days, we delved into the lives of various people in the Bible who were preserved for a purpose by the Lord, people like Caleb, Hosea, and the Rechabites. 

For four days, the Lord reminded us why He had set us apart as His people and His children.

Aside from the fellowship we had with our brothers and sisters not just from Thailand but also from countries like Vietnam, Cambodia, and the Philippines. Families also came. It was a time of strengthening as God fortified our faith for whatever season was ahead of us. 

Individually, people received prayers and words of encouragement. Each person has a testimony about what they received through the teaching and prayer. Almost everyone had their own testimony regarding Kairos Night, a night during the camp reserved solely for worship.

During the pandemic, many churches including Oasis saw their faith challenged. It resulted in some people drifting away. But it was during this camp that the Lord was reminding us to keep going. We were the ones who remained and got through that period. We are the remnants, and the Lord was reminding us to persevere no matter what may come our way in the coming months and years.