DAVIS—CrossTimbers Children’s Mission Adventure Camp continues to see improvements at its current location, since moving six years ago. A big reason for the improvements and renovations comes from a group of church members from Nicoma Park, First visiting the campgrounds every Spring Break to help any way they can.
They call themselves the “A-Team,” a group of men and women who have taken on major projects every year and accomplish so much to help improve different elements of CrossTimbers. This annual endeavor started the first year CrossTimbers moved to the area outside Davis, not far from Falls Creek Baptist Conference Center.
“They are skilled workers,” said Clay Young, CrossTimbers camp manager, about the “A-Team.” “Most of them are retired. We’ve had them do sheet rock. We’ve had them put insulation in. Last year they poured concrete, and they finished the Mission House for us. This year they put a loft in our shop area so we could organize that better.”
The Mission House is an old rock building that was in “rough shape” when CrossTimbers first took over the campgrounds. Now it’s one of the main stops during the summer camp weeks, where children learn different aspects of mission education.
Tom Bogan and Bob Sanders are two of the “A-Team” leaders, and Bogan, who serves as the chairman of Nicoma Park, First’s missions committee, first heard about CrossTimbers moving to the current site six years ago and that there was a lot of work needing to be done.
“It was in bad shape,” Bogan said about seeing the campgrounds for the first time. “We spent an entire week making the place more functional and presentable.” This was just the beginning.
“Every year we go down there,” Sanders said. “We built a good connection with Clay and the others, and some of us go back as sponsors when our kids are down there.”
And every year, as Young mentioned, they take on new projects. They built the deck next to the swimming pool. They also pour the concrete for the sidewalk leading up to the pool. Bogan said it was their idea for the sidewalk, and they even marked their work.
“We put our church initials in the corner of the cement,” Bogan said with a laugh.
Two other projects the A-Team did include making a new sound booth for the conference center at CrossTimbers and installing water-cooling stations at different camp locations.
“We save about 60,000 water bottles because they put those water-cooling stations in,” Young said. “They make a difference in everything they do, whether they are saving me labor or saving me time, but also, I enjoy the fellowship. These guys believe in what we do, and they support us in everything we do.”
The heart and compassion for people is what drives the A-Team. It’s not just at CrossTimbers, Sanders and his friends go in vans to housing areas to take pick up children every Wednesday night and take them to church.
“Bob loves children. He prays for them and helps them through their problems,” Bogan said about his A-Team partner. Bogan also mentioned that Sanders is the one who teenagers are drawn to when they join the A-Team on week-long projects and listen intently when Sanders shares during devotion times.
Young noticed one significant impact Nicoma Park, First’s A-Team has made is on the life of a young man named Ishmael who made a profession of faith in Christ last summer at CrossTimbers. Ishmael and his family are now attending Nicoma Park, First, because Sanders and his friends invited Ishmael to go to camp.
“That’s what made it full circle,” Young said. “They brought (Ishmael) to camp and was saved here. They really engaged with him, his mom and grandmother. The whole family started coming to church, and some have accepted Christ.”
Whether it’s doing improvement projects, taking children to church or being a sponsor at CrossTimbers, the A-Team is an example of what many Oklahoma Baptists do to help bring people to Christ.
“The blessing is seeing people using these facilities for the Lord,” Bogan said about their work. “It’s just a great feeling to be helpful and do things for the Lord, knowing people will have a better experience.”
Bogan also could say he loves it when a plan comes together.