Finding Grace In An Ice Storm
by: Ted Nelson
An Unexpected Encounter with Grace
Editor's note: Our Partners, Ted and Georgie Nelson, in Wausau, Wisconsin, USA, have been involved and connected with FMIN to the maximum strength in every way since they "found us" in 2001. We have expanded the kingdom together, especially in our youth endeavors. Now, read Ted and Georgie's story of how they came to discover FMIN one stormy night in Kansas City, Missouri, USA.
In January, 2001, Georgie and I were returning to Wausau, Wisconsin, after attending some advanced ministry classes at ORU in Tulsa, Oklahoma. It had started raining as we were approaching the Kansas City area. The weather report said that it was going to turn into an ice storm. We checked into a motel and went to look for a place to eat. As we rounded a corner, I noticed a church that looked as though there was some remodeling going on. The sign on the building read "Faith Ministries World Outreach Center." I pulled into the parking lot to see what was going on while Georgie urged me to continue on our quest for a restaurant. Someone introduced herself as Teresa Ekern. Teresa and her husband Steve, were the youth pastors.
I asked Teresa, "What kind of church are you?" She said, "Word of Faith and Grace." Being a Rhema and ORU alumni, I knew what "Word of Faith" was. I thought I knew what "Grace" was, but I wasn't sure what "Word of Faith AND Grace" was. She gave me an FMIN newsletter, and I retreated out to the car to find a place to stuff ourselves with some delightful, unhealthy local cuisine. A few months later I read the newsletter from front to back. I decided to email FMIN to get more information. I received an email back from the head man himself within a few hours. I thought, "This has got to be some pretty dinky operation if the head guy is answering the emails." There was no way that any of the "big guys" would answer any general email that came into their organization.
Over the following couple of months we emailed back and forth. I kept thinking I was going to shock him with my "non-religious" thoughts and theological "heresies."
Finally, one day, I asked, "What would we need to do to hook up with you guys?" An email came back and said, "Be at our World Conference in Denver in two weeks." I emailed back and said, "There is absolutely no way we could make it on that short of notice."
BUT GOD . . . . . . .!
Two weeks later we were in Denver and were absolutely blown away by the casual, relaxed, friendly, loving, openness of everyone. What we were looking for was FREEDOM, and we weren't going to waste any more time in bondage; we ran for the opening.
Over the following years as we got to know Dave and Bonnie, Dennis and Denise Capra and so many others in the Network, we started to find what the benefits of true relational Christianity truly are. There isn't a time when we contact anyone in the Network and are not greeted with open arms. The teaching that we started absorbing from the Duells, Capras, Jim Richards, Andrew Wommack and so many others has literally transformed our lives and, as a result, transforms the people that God brings into our fellowship in Wausau. The Good News Gospel of God's unconditional grace and the revelation of a believer's righteousness in the finished work of Christ has the power to not only change lives but also to change the environment in which we live.
Thank you FMIN!
Ted and Georgie Nelson, FMIN Partners and pastors of Big Church Alive in Wausau, Wisconsin, USA, have three married sons and five grandchildren. Ted is a teacher and Georgie is an exhorter; both have prophetic gifts. They feel that the Divine hookup with FMIN is their mandate to take the message of God's love, grace and faith-righteousness and run with it.
2007 Faith Network News PDF
WE HAVE BEEN PRAYING FOR A CHURCH LIKE THIS FOR A LONG TIME! WE LOOK FORWARD TO COMING TO WORSHIP WITH YOU IN THE FUTURE.
by: ANNE MARTIN