Acorns From Oakes

Seeing With Our Father's Eyes

Keep Listening To The Drummer, R.B.

I suppose that in this life it will alway remain a wonderful mystery to me that I have been allowed (and this permission must issue from Father God Himself) to, all along the way, not only spend time in the presence of fine men and women of faith…but to actually have some of then even regard me as friend. They are out there, in front of me, leading the way on the frontier of faith. These splendid spirits beckon to me…encourage me…help me want to keep on going. I must confess that I have often felt a sense of dread that one day they would discover the truth about me…they would find out about my dullness, laziness, stubbornness and my sheer, stupid, sinfulness…and turn away from me, wanting nothing else at all to do with someone like me. But then I realize that they have been long enough in the company of Jesus to not treat me as I deserve. I also realize that they already know many of my failings and sins and have graciously refused to define me by these numerous negatives.

Just here and just now…I want to single out one of them. Maybe it’s just because there are about 1300 miles between us. Maybe it’s just because I haven’t told him lately. Maybe it’s just because today I am conscious of my faults and all the times I’ve failed to remember him to the Lord. I’m sorry for that, Rex. But I will forever be glad that God introduced us and put into your heart such a love for me…a love that actually feels like a warm presence in my life…that without ever being critical has nevertheless shown me where I need to grow…that without ever challenging me made me want to be better…that without ever saying, “Do it this way,” made me want to do it that way because it seemed so like Jesus.

Though we regard one another highly in love as friends, knit together in heart and soul. I also regard you as leader. I have seen you go where others can’t. I’ve seen God do things through you that explained the gifts and energy and vision He gave you. I’ve often seen you stop, turn and wait for me to come along…without complaint…without pushing. I can’t keep pace with you. And, while I am at peace with that…I want to keep trying. And maybe that will encourage you. I’m also at peace with that because I think the quote I’m including next applies very much to you, my friend.

“If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away.”

                                                                                      —Henry David Thoreau

And I just want to say, my brother, my friend…please…keep listening!

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14 thoughts on “Keep Listening To The Drummer, R.B.

  1. Amen and amen.
    The statements you make about Rex strike a familiar chord! He has re-directed me without criticizing. He has led me closer to Jesus…by example. He has rescued me and saved my life.

    My brother…my friend…Rex is truly a gift from God (as anyone who gets a chance to be around him will find out) His incredible knowledge of God’s word is inspiring. As is his incredible heart for loving people. Reminds me so much of Jesus~

    Thank you for honoring him. And, by the way, I think the two of you are very much alike actually.

    • oakesclan on said:

      I agree with everything you said, except that last sentence. He is miles down that spiritual road ahead of me. But I’m moving in that direction because of Jesus and servants like Rex and you. God bless you, Sherry.

  2. All I can say is Amen!!! He is an awesome person. I have know Rex for a sort period, but in that time he has made an impact in my life. Rex is a wonderful man.

    thanks for honoring Rex.


  3. Art Lynch on said:

    Thanks for reminding me of Rex. He is a godly man and loves Jesus with all his heart.

  4. I count myself fortunate to have Rex as a friend.

    When I first met him, he pretty much held hero status in my life. I loved his preaching and wanted to live a life like the Jesus he introduced to me.

    Later, he became my teacher. He taught me more about the Word and how to share its message with those around me. He reminded me constantly that, “It is enough to be like Jesus.”

    I went through a time in my life where I began to question and doubt … rebel and reject. This attitude began to destroy me from the inside out. I didn’t want him to watch that … and possibly didn’t want him to stop me … so I walked away. However, the drum continued to beat … I never let go of his influence.

    After many years apart, our paths crossed again. This time I was an adult. I still held him as a hero and teacher, but now he became a friend. A friend I trusted and didn’t want to hide from anymore. He talked me through the most difficult time of my life … and helped me find a resting place with others like me.

    I am forever grateful for the influence he has had on my life. His song has played in the background no matter what the circumstance. Even greater than that, he has taught me to listen to One far greater than him, whose Song is eternal.

    • oakesclan on said:

      I love the story of your connection with Rex…and the progression in your relationship from hero to friend. I think that is truly a progression which is also an amazing blessing. I feel like if you were to go to a dictionary and look up the word “friend”- Rex’s picture should be there.
      God bless you, Paige.

  5. Anonymous on said:

    I know my Brother Doug and Rex have been Good Friends since they met in Lubbock Tx many years ago. I wish everyone could find a relationship like their’s. Especially to help each other remain close to God and be encouraged by directions of their life.
    Things they see in each other that causes them to Love God More and People More.
    That is the Best and what God wants of us.
    I went to Betty Pittman’s funeral yesterday and I sat down by a nice couple. We had a little while to talk before the funeral. There names LeRoy & Junita Bumpus. Grandfather and Grandmother to the Bumpus children we went to camp with.
    We got to talking and the first person they named was Rex Boyles and his relationship with encouraging and being around their grandchildren changed their lives. They said they thought an awful lot of Rex and I think they said Patty Bumpus went to Aim and
    became a secretary to Rex and Patty met her husband in the Aim Program. I think I got that right. And the grandparents knew Doug also and knew how close Doug and Rex are. That was just from me sitting down by someone in Beavercreek Ohio at a funeral. I see how things far and wide can spread if you Belong to God.

    It is good to know you are both are like Jonathan & David – No closer love and care in a good friend.

    • oakesclan on said:

      Amen, sis. I too pray for everyone to have such a friend on earth. It would truly lift their hearts, especially in the tough seasons of life. I love you. God bless you.

  6. Email Girl on said:

    I don’t think about angels a lot. I don’t claim to know much of anything about them in fact. But it has crossed my mind several times that maybe Rex is an angel that was sent to me by God to save me from myself. Rex would probably scoff at the idea but its not so far fetched.

    In my early years Rex was simply someone who fanned a passion in my heart for God. That lead me to a place where he taught me about Jesus, and he taught me how to be stronger than I believed I was in the name of God. He gently pushed me to step away from my fears and invite people to church and to bible studies…he instilled in me a desire to be a better person and taught me some lessons that I will never forget about being a Christian. When it looked to the world and my brothers and sisters in Christ that I had messed up, he accepted me and was not afraid to let others know he did. Then in a blink, it seemed, I lost contact with him.

    Fast forward 18 years later, God put him there in my life again. This time to save me from destruction of self and destruction from others. He basically walked me back into a life again, having been in a state of just existing for about 6 years prior. He held me up when I couldn’t stand on my own. He stuck with me through doubt and fear and little faith…stuck with me when I pushed him back and fought to stay where I was…stuck with me through heartache and sobbing and fighting for my voice to be heard around me….sticks with me still, through more good times than bad. He allows me to lean on him whenever I need a break from standing on my own and believe he always will. The Jesus he only told me about years before came to life when I began to see that Rex was only doing for me what Jesus would also do for me. He is an example of how one can be like Jesus.

    An angel of the Lord? I don’t really know. But I know he is a very close representation of one in my life and in the lives of many. When I start to doubt that God loves me the one thing I can never explain is “Why would God send me Rex if He didn’t love me?” and that brings me back to whats real. Gods love.

    Thank you Rex…forever.

    And thank you Doug for being his friend and allowing us to sing of him here.

    • oakesclan on said:

      It was encouraging to read of your experience of the difference the Lord made in your life through His servant and our friend, Rex. Thank you for sharing these things from your heart. God richly bless you.

  7. Sorry to intrude on your post, but the quote is from Henry David Thoreau. One of my favorite quotes.

    • Doug Oakes on said:

      Thanks for the correction, Anne. The source I got it from was also mistaken.
      I will update the post. Thanks, again. D Oakes

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