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Why are You a Methodist, Anyways?

If you’re like me, you might scratch your head when you consider just how many Christian denominations exist. Sure, we might anticipate religious diversity throughout the world, but who could have anticipated such diversity within Christianity itself? Think about how many churches you pass on your way to work, or better yet, how many churches you pass on your way to wherever you worship on any given week. How can we explain such a wide array of expressions of a supposedly unified faith? In my life, different circumstances have led ... Read More »

A Glimpse of Eternal Life

“ I think that we humans don’t have the capacity to imagine eternity, Mom” said my ninth-grade daughter Joanne. “If we can think of it a little bit, we may live differently.” This short conversation recently grabbed my attention. My daughter’s English class had been reading and discussing the book “Dante’s Inferno.” She was assigned a small group project that explored the different levels of hell as described in the book. When she spoke about her class, she mentioned how she was scared about the conditions of hell portrayed in ... Read More »

The Message Our Body Brings to Life

Does it surprise you to look at these two photos, side by side? The one on the left is among the tiniest of miracles, a cell in the brain. The one on the right is perhaps the grandest of miracles, the universe. Their similarity is striking. It’s all a matter of scale… and perspective. One wonders if they aren’t both the work of the same hand. Why waste a perfectly good idea, right? As my friend Mary Lou puts it, “God is the ultimate economist and consummate recycler.” When we have ... Read More »

Set Free

“Christ has set us free to live a free life. So take your stand! Never again let anyone put a harness of slavery on you.” – Galatians 5:1 Several years ago, in the midst of a carpool drop-off, a friend said to me in passing, “Someday I want you to tell me why you always seem so content.” If I recall correctly, I laughed and said that my kids and husband might disagree with her characterization but that I would love to have coffee and chat more about it. And ... Read More »

Is God Good All the Time?

“God is good…All the time! And all the time…God is good!” Ah, the call and response of a faithful people. We like knowing how to respond. But do we believe it? Is God really good all the time? For the parent who’s just lost a child? For the man who’s just received a dire diagnosis? For the teen who is bullied, the wife who is abused? What of the family without a home? The children who live in fear? The list goes on and on. Is God really all that good? ... Read More »

If We All Prayed at Once, Could We Move a Mountain?

I’ve often thought about what would happen if every Christian in the world, or even just in the United States, would pray at the same time in the name of Jesus. Could we actually see a mountain move? In my heart, I believe that yes, we could. I don’t know if I am a rare bird in 2017 or if others agree, but it’s worth a try, isn’t it? This week marks the 65th year that the United States will hold the National Day of Prayer, which was brought to ... Read More »

I’m So Disappointed in You

One day when I was eight-years-old I was walking through the kitchen and there on the counter was a full size Hershey’s chocolate bar, not one of those little miniatures, a full size candy bar. I wanted that candy bar. A lot. So I looked right and left, around the corner and behind me to make sure no one else was looking, and I took it. I went into my room and hid it in this little red and white lunch box that I played with sometimes. That night at ... Read More »

Don’t Ignore Your GPS

A good friend and I traveled downtown to see a show at the Kennedy Center recently. We left the suburbs early so we could have a relaxing dinner before. As we left our neighborhood, my GPS offered a route that my friend and I never take to D.C. because it tends to be congested with traffic. “Let’s just go the way we always go,” I said. Well, I’ll bet you can already guess what happened. Traffic came to a halt somewhere between McLean and the George Washington Parkway. Watching the ... Read More »

Wisdom: When You Just Know

My heart beats more quickly than usual. The feeling in the pit of my stomach is familiar, a pang of recognition and anticipation. I sense an invitation has been extended, an offer made, an answer found. Perhaps it is an intuitive knowing, a sixth sense, a gut reaction or an answer to prayer. Whatever name you give it, many of us can recall times when we just know. Deep in our spirits. We. Just. Know. But then the questioning begins. We second guess and argue with ourselves. What if I’m ... Read More »

The Love o’ the Irish

It’s a day that means so much more than alcohol, green rivers and Irish culture. In fact, St. Patrick’s Day is, at its core, a day about restoration, which is exactly what we are talking about at Floris UMC this Lent in our sermon series, “Restored.” Patrick asked questions about living a restored life in community with others, questions so central to our practice of Christian faith. If you have never heard anything about who St. Patrick was or what he did, I encourage you to watch this short video ... Read More »

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