1: a fertile or green area in an arid region (such as a desert)
2: something that provides refuge, relief, or pleasant contrast
God, when you took the lead with your people, when you marched out into the wild, Earth shook, sky broke out in a sweat; God was on the march. Even Sinai trembled at the sight of God on the move, at the sight of Israel’s God. You pour out rain in buckets, O God; thorn and cactus become an oasis for your people to camp in and enjoy. You set them up in business; they went from rags to riches. Psalm 68:7-10
What can be more refreshing than a cool drink of water on a sweltering hot day? I remember as a kid playing baseball in the back yard with my brother, and we would be too preoccupied with playing ball to get a drink from inside the house. So, finally, we would turn on the garden hose, let it run for a while until the water was cool, then we would drink right from the hose. The cool water splashing onto our face made the experience even better. I can still remember the refreshment of that water!
It reminds me that when we face the heat of a busy day, whether or not it is literally hot outside, we need a break, an oasis. I tell my clients that there can be larger oases and smaller oases, but we must build them into our day.
For example, for me, a small oasis might be a fresh cup of tea in the afternoon to refresh me between seeing clients. A larger oasis might be looking forward to a nice long walk at the end of the day, or a show that I can watch with my wife in the evening. An even larger oasis might be that trip that we plan for a few months in advance when we can take a week or two off.
The point is, we need to make room for regular oases to refresh us daily, weekly, monthly. For me, it is the reward for having accomplished what I said I was going to do. Sometimes we lose sight of the need for the oasis because we think of it as a “big thing”. I believe that small and regular rewards keep us going better than looking for the “big thing”. But that’s just me. Whatever your preference, be aware of what your oasis might be. Build them in regularly.
It is that cold water out of the hose on a hot summer day.
Prayer: Father, you give us oases all around us, help us to see then, then use them to refresh us for our mission, Amen.