What can you expect when you step inside Fields of Grace?
Well, some pretty cool stuff!
- A Casual Environment: A casual environment where you can come as you are. This is a judgement free zone. In the summer we worship outdoors on a beautiful, pristine farm. In the winter we meet indoors (we are not fans of sitting in the snow, although snow angels can be fun).
- Positive People: Real people, with real struggles. We're not perfect here but we do serve the One who is perfect. We try our best to love as Jesus loves - without condition. We are comprised of people from all walks of life. Professionals, farmers, home-makers, teenagers, retirees, and even the occasional purple hair. We are a diverse gathering of people who love Jesus and try to love others to the best of our ability. We might mess up from time to time, but we sure do try our best and trust God to change and transform our rough edges.
- Feel Good Friendliness: We sure have a lot of friendly people who like to smile, laugh, and have fun. Jesus is not boring and neither are we! We believe in celebrating the joy of the Lord.
- Cheerful Conversation: This is not a whisper zone where you sit like a quiet church mouse. (Although if that is your thing, you certainly can.) At FOG you can talk, laugh, enjoy the company of others before and after service. Yeah, you still have to be quiet during the message but you'll be glad you were. FOG loves teaching relevant, "This speaks to me" messages, based on the Bible.
- Delightful Dogs: Dogs are welcome in the outdoor, summer services (May - October) as long as they are leashed and friendly. NO dogs in the winter...But Wait... Our church is home of the FOG Dog Comfort Dogs. We are raising up a Christ-centered canine ministry to help minister to people who are hurting, lonely or in need. FOG will have some of our very own FOG Dogs visiting winter services once a month.
- Soul-Stretching Services: We strive to make each service something you were glad to have been at. If we miss the mark occasionally, oops, we'll do better the next time. Contrary to popular belief, church leaders are not superheroes, although Jeanine tends to wear a lot of capes. Services generally last about an hour and 15 minutes and we do try to start right on time (10 a.m.). In the winter the doors lock at 10:10 a.m. so if you arrive after that time, well, we sure will miss seeing your smiling face, but locked is locked.
- Teaching: Teaching from Lead Pastor Jeanine M Weintz or other area Pastors, teachers and lay leaders. We try to keep it real, relevant and engaging.
- Worship: High-energy, contemporary worship music primarily May - October as we worship outdoors. During the cold winter we are indoors and have more of an unplugged, acoustic worship setting. Of course, the music is still pretty awesome! Come ready to sing. You can clap your hands, raise your arms or stand still. This is your worship time. Praise as the Spirit of God leads you.
- Jazzed Up Java: Coffee, tea, hot chocolate (with those yummy little marshmallows). We have the "real deal" half and half creamer and whipped cream, too.
- Terrific Treats: We serve some sort of goodies each week, oftentimes home-baked by some of our amazing members. Church folk make the best desserts!
- Keep-Up Kids: Well, we're working on that. We do not have a nursery, sorry, but kids are always welcome. We love having those little wonders join us. Watch our website. We are working on developing a VBS program for the summer of 2018.
Afraid lightening will strike if you walk inside a church?
At FOG, we want you to know that you can belong before you believe. We all have questions and struggle with faith, the Bible and what we believe. That's OK. It is our hope that as you visit week to week you will discover for yourself who Jesus is and what it means to have Him in your life. (It's awesome!!)
You do not have to come knowing everything. Just come and let the Holy Spirit help you sort it out. Please do read our "What We Believe" statement so that you understand our position, but know that we love and welcome you even if you are still trying to discover your truth. We are all on a journey and we are here to help you discover the joy and truth in that journey...plus have some fun along the way!
Do you only preach fire and brimstone? I'm not into fire.
Does the Bible mention fire and brimstone? Yes, it does. Has this been used in certain preaching styles to attempt to use God's judgement to scare people into repentance? Yes, it has. So let's just simplify this once and for all.
Suppose a child is instructed by his Father not to run around an open fire pit but does so anyway. Now suppose this child trips, falls head long into the fire and smoldering embers and sustains third degree burns over 100% of his body. The Father, who repeatedly warned his child to the dangers of fire is devastated and heartbroken over the pain and suffering his child must now endure, but the Father cannot change the outcome. The damage has already been done and is irreversible.
The warnings the Father gave were given out of love for his child. The Father’s deep, all-encompassing love, compelled him to repeatedly warn the child so that the child would always be safe, protected, and in the Father's care. The choice to heed the warning however, was the child's. The Father could shout and holler and nag and demand, but in the end, it was the child's choice to disobey. Thinking he knew best, the child ignored the Father in defiance and did what he wanted to do. “No one’s going to tell me how to live my life,” was the attitude of the child.
The result is now a child with scars that will not go away and pain that will forever alter his life and appearance. Was this the Father's fault? Did the Father want this to happen? Did not the Father provide repeated warnings, instruction and a way around the destruction of the fiery flames? Nonetheless, when the warning was not heeded, the laws of destruction applied; flesh and fire do not mix.
The fate of the child was forever sealed and there is no longer a way of escape or restoring the child to his former self.
While I disagree with the method of pounding on a pulpit, screaming at people, harshly judging them, speaking words filled with hateful venom and telling them they're gonna burn in hell, (fire & brimstone), I do affirm and agree that there is a real hell. Don’t let misguided teaching methods keep you from seeing truth. Many teachers mean well but their delivery lacks much to be desired.
You see, while Heaven is real, so is Hell. If you acknowledge Heaven, you cannot dismiss Hell. There really is no question as to the components of Hell. We read about this throughout scripture, but let’s look at just one example; Revelation 20:10, “And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are also; and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.”
Did you notice that “the devil” deceives people? That’s his primary job and he’s pretty good at it. But here is the Good News… God knows the devil is a big, fat liar (John 8:44) so God gives multiple warnings and instructions to all of us, warning us to not run around the open fire pit.
All of us have sinned (Romans 5:12) and all means just that, ALL. You, me, the little sweet granny who bakes neighborhood cookies, the temper-throwing toddler, dynamic leaders, powerful rulers, honored presidents, revered Popes and even the preacher shouting fire and brimstone from the pulpit. All have sinned.
There are two seemingly little words that are a huge game changer for all of mankind. What are they? We find them in Romans 5:8 “But God….” “But God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners."
Did you catch that? He did not come once we cleaned up our act, washed off the mud and made ourselves presentable. He came “while we were still sinners.” Who does that? GOD!
God, being fully holy, completely just and righteously perfect does not want to cast anyone into a place of torment. Being perfectly just requires a perfect atonement for sin. Why do we get so tripped up on this? Could it be we simply don’t like to think of ourselves as sinners? I sure don’t. I like to think of myself as a decent human being who does mostly good and occasionally bad. But by whose standards am I measuring good from bad? Human standards or godly, holy righteousness?
Think about this: If someone murders innocent people, don’t we demand that justice be served and the perpetrator pay the penalty? The sinful act (murder) requires punishment (incarceration or possibly even death) for the crime. You may argue, “Yeah well that is different, it’s not like I murdered anyone.”
Let’s look at that. What did Jesus say about murder? Let’s look at 1 John 3:15, “Anyone who hates a brother or sister is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life residing in him.” Ouch!
And it gets worse…..Look at Matthew 5:21-22, “You have heard that it was said to the ancients, ‘Do not murder,’ and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment.”
Whoa! Did you catch that. “…anyone who is angry.” Murder does not have to entail taking physical life but can be committed in many ways. You can murder your wife, your husband, your children, your friends, neighbors, and co-workers by spewing poisonous words filled with hatred and bitterness. So, face it friends, none of us are gonna lick this “free from sin” thing. So now what?
Here is your deliverance from fire and brimstone….
1 John 1:9, “If we [freely] admit that we have sinned and confess our sins, He [God] is faithful and just [true to His own nature and promises] and will forgive our sins [dismiss our lawlessness] and [continuously] cleanse us from all unrighteousness [everything not in conformity to His will in purpose, thought, and action].”
This is the BEST NEWS EVER!!! Instead of receiving just punishment that lasts forever [Hell], Jesus Christ took the punishment that is ours upon Himself and declares us righteous and free.
1 Peter 2:24 (AMP)
"He personally carried our sins in His body on the cross [willingly offering Himself on it, as on an altar of sacrifice], so that we might die to sin [becoming immune from the penalty and power of sin] and live for righteousness; for by His wounds you [who believe] have been healed."
Is there fire and brimstone? You bet! Do you have to worry about it? Not if you know Jesus Christ as your Redeemer, Father and Friend.
Stop fighting the fire and brimstone war and run into the arms of Jesus. You’ll be glad you did! -Minister Jeanine
I feel like churches are always begging for money. Why is that?
So, let’s just get it out of the way up front. No, Fields of Grace does not pass an offering plate, but we do welcome God’s cheerful givers. We simply place a donation box on our back table and allow you to anonymously give as the Lord leads. Giving is between you and your Lord.
Money is such a peculiar thing. If we don’t have it, we want it. If we do have it, we want just a little bit more. Let’s face it, money gives us choices and options. If you have money, you can buy food. If you don’t, you will go hungry and possibly starve. Money allows us to have many things in life: Internet, smart phones, computers, a car, purchase fuel, pay utilities, a mortgage, insurance; the list just goes on. But money cannot buy you peace, calm assurance, or joy.
Money in and of itself is not evil. The love of money is is what Jesus cautioned us about. When we love money (especially more than God) we will pursue it with a tenacious spirit like a dog hunting a duck. We are set on retrieving the prize and nothing is going to take our eye (or sniffer) off the mark.
I have always liked the following scripture, “we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out,” How very true.
1 Timothy 6:7-10 “For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness.”
God is not opposed to money. It’s all His anyway. God blessed Solomon with riches beyond measure because when Solomon had the chance to ask anything of God, instead of selfish ambition and riches, he chose to ask for wisdom; so God gave him both!
“Give me now wisdom and knowledge, that I may go out and come in before this people, for who can rule this great people of Yours?" God said to Solomon, "Because you had this in mind, and did not ask for riches, wealth or honor, or the life of those who hate you, nor have you even asked for long life, but you have asked for yourself wisdom and knowledge that you may rule My people over whom I have made you king, wisdom and knowledge have been granted to you. And I will give you riches and wealth and honor, such as none of the kings who were before you has possessed nor those who will come after you." 2 Chronicles 1:10-12
The church survives on the generosity and giving of the people. Individuals who clearly understand that everything they have is a gift from God’s hand (not just 10% of it) know the value of supporting the work of the church, discipleship and sharing of the Gospel of Grace. Doing the Lord’s work incurs expenses just like any other entity in this world. It’s just that simple. The difference is, the church operates on 100% faith and relies on God to move in the hearts of His people to come alongside the ministry and cheerfully support its mission.
FOG believes in 2 Corinthians 9:7, You must each decide in your heart how much to give. And don't give reluctantly or in response to pressure. For God loves a person who gives cheerfully.
If you believe in the vision and work of Fields of Grace and consider this your place of acceptance and learning, then give as the Lord leads to help in the furtherance of the message and the mission. FOG will not operate in debt. If we lack funds for something, then we just don’t proceed forward until the Lord provides through giving hearts.
As your minister, as well as our Board of Directors, we lean into Philippians 4:11-13, “I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”
God is our strength. We are all still in process, daily learning contentment and trusting God to supply the needs of Fields of Grace through the generosity He places in the hearts of His people. We are committed to the pursuit of righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness. We are here to serve God and His people. We trust He will supply whatever we need to accomplish His purposes. We also acknowledge that at times God may allow us to go without not because He is mean or does not care, but because there is a lesson that we individually, or as a church need to learn.
Our greatest desire is that people (lots of people) come to a place of saving grace in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. At the end of the day, it does not matter if we worship in a field (and we oftentimes do). Whether we operate at bear minimum or in abundant blessing, our focus is reaching the lost, no matter the circumstances. We simply move forward day to day, sometimes hour to hour, and trust God’s hand of blessing on this, His Church.