You Can’t Outserve Those Women – FGF Highlights, Plant City, FL

Our Plant City, Florida Fresh Grounded Faith is a wrap!

Just after the event, our National Conference Director, Terrie Bitter, shared a story with our ministry team that I want to share with you because it perfectly illustrates the hearts of the Plant City women.

Fresh Grounded Faith Plant City Florida Annie F. Downs Laura Story Shaun Groves

Thank you to Troy McClellan for the beautiful photos. To see the entire Facebook photo album, click here. For those of you who joined the photo booth fun, you can view your photos here.

Terrie shared how she was heading home from another FGF, and on the flight, she watched the movie Pearl Harbor on her iPad.

During the film, she gasped and pushed pause when she heard something she wanted to remember, and then pulled out some crumpled paper and a pen and started scribbling what she was hearing.

Our Production and Product Manager, Jimmy—who happens to be her hubby—was sitting next to her, and as he saw her scrambling for something to write on, he gave her the “why are you taking notes on a movie” look! Ha!

Well, here’s why…

In the movie, the actor who played Lt. Col. James Doolitte said, “There is nothing stronger than the heart of a volunteer.”

Then later on in the film, another character observed, “What we do for ourselves dies with us; what we have done for others remains.”

Now do you see why Terrie took notes from a movie?!

Those are good quotes, right?

Well, this is what we see time and time again at each FGF event, where the heart of our volunteers beats with the spirit of service, generosity, and compassion.

Terrie recalled these words after FGF Plant City because they beautifully capture the hearts of everyone involved, including our Local Conference Coordinator Kay Morris, the women from all 13 of our co-host churches, and each of the 150 volunteers who made this event happen.

Our volunteers are the heartbeat of FGF, and without them, it would be impossible.

We all need each other, and as I say each time I get to meet those wonderful women who volunteer, “The ground at the foot of the cross is perfectly level. There are no highs or lows at the foot of the cross.”

Well, everyone involved in the weekend embraced these words and eagerly showcased the body of Christ in action.

The team at First Baptist Church Plant City kept the church doors wide open and provided countless resources to host the event. Laura Story, Annie F. Downs, and Shaun Groves led worship and shared timely messages of hope and encouragement. And our many volunteers whole-heartedly served the women in their community with compassion and grace.

We were all privileged to serve together by the gifts and talents the Holy Spirit gave to each of us to bring glory to Jesus and encouragement to each other.

And, my friend, the Lord is faithful!

We celebrated 3 new sisters in Christ, 24 women who chose to renew their commitment to the Lord, and 26 children sponsored through Compassion International. Praise the Lord!

It was His work for His glory, and we were humbled that He called us to participate.

As Peter wrote in his epistle…

Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen. – 1 Peter 4:10-11 (NIV)


Jennifer and the FGF Team!

BONUS: Annie F. Downs, Laura Story, and Shaun Groves join me on the 4:13 Podcast

Would you like to hear more from these guests? Annie, Laura, and Shaun each joined me on the 4:13 Podcast to give us another boost of encouragement. Listen to their episodes below:

Can I Be Brave When Deep Down I’m Afraid? With Annie F. Downs [Episode 61]
Can I Live My Life With Open Hands? With Laura Story [Episode 18]
Can I Give Up My Plan for God’s Plan? With Laura Story [Episode 45]
Can My Pain Become My Purpose? With Shaun Groves [Episode 77]

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