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A New Friend

Editor’s Note: The Floris Guest House is a program at Floris United Methodist Church (Floris UMC) in Herndon, Virginia. During one week in January, Floris UMC hosts about 40 homeless individuals each night 5 p.m.-7 a.m. Guests receive a hot dinner, breakfast, a place to sleep, a shower and the opportunity to participate in various evening activities. The following post was written by one of the Floris Guest House 2017 volunteers, Susanne Keating. I have a new friend. (My kids would exclaim, “You always say you have a new friend!”) ... Read More »

Struggling for the Good Stuff

Last year, I had the opportunity to accompany my husband on a business trip to Napa, California. As you may know, this area is known as wine country: the home of hundreds of miles of gently rolling hills, uniquely beautiful architecture and acres and acres of breathtaking vineyards. In my attempt to be a supportive and loving wife, I soldiered through several days of tasting fine wine, dining on culinary masterpieces and meeting fascinating people who drink good wine and eat good food for a living. Having a husband in ... Read More »

I Chose Forgiveness

Editor’s Note: During Floris UMC’s February 2017 sermon series, “Unburdened,” we asked congregation members to anonymously share their stories of forgiveness. The following is one of those stories. My life changed in July of 2010. I’d quit my job and uprooted my kids from their school and home to move out to Virginia. I took a call halfway across the county from my husband, who had moved a month ahead of us, that left me reeling. He didn’t love me anymore, and my future had suddenly, to me, gone sideways. ... Read More »

A Poem on Forgiveness

Editor’s Note: This poem was written by Rick Wormeli. It was inspired by Floris UMC’s sermon series on forgiveness titled, “Unburdened.” Dad, can you forgive me? For the times I cursed your authority when I knew you were so wrong, but later found how right you were? For the times of struggle when I did not turn to you, yet that was the very thing you wanted most—to be needed? Mom, can you forgive me? For the times I misinterpreted your encouragement of me as disappointment in me? For the ... Read More »

Forgiving Family

Editor’s Note: During Floris UMC’s February 2017 sermon series, “Unburdened,” we asked congregation members to anonymously share their stories of forgiveness. The following is one of those stories. When it comes to family and money…I would have never thought that my family would choose money, but they did. More than 20 years ago my aunt passed away without a will. My aunt had substantial wealth. She owned several homes in the area and lived on a big farm in Luray, Virginia. This was my mother’s sister. So, when mom was ... Read More »

God is Love

Editor’s Note: During Floris UMC’s February 2017 sermon series, “Unburdened,” we asked congregation members to anonymously share their stories of forgiveness. The following is one of those stories. My mother was incapacitated from a stroke, and when she passed away my sister and I found out that our brother has spent quite a lot of her money only to better himself. We were always a very close-knit family so this came as quite a shock to me. The amount he spent was astonishing, but the real hurt came from his ... Read More »

After the Retreat

I had reached that critical moment when it was absolutely imperative that I get away. You know the feeling. It’s that moment when various elements of your personal and professional lives collide in a perfect storm of chaos, and at the end of each day you collapse on the bed only to wake in a panic and jump right back in it again. It is typically in these seasons that we neglect the very things that would make us feel more energized and healthy. Our own mental, physical and spiritual ... Read More »

Rethinking Resolutions

It’s almost mid-January. This is when most people start rethinking their resolutions. The excuses begin. “I don’t really need to lose that much weight.” “I can start saving money next month.” “Work is way too busy right now to plan for a vacation.” Why is it so hard to stick with certain commitments? Why do so many people fail, even though they spend months preparing for the special moment to begin working on their goals? There are many reasons why someone might give up on something before he or she ... Read More »

R-E-S-P-E-C-T

Respect is a tricky thing. If you look up the word respect in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary you find this definition: “A high or special regard: esteem.” But I’m not sure if that definition really encompasses all that respect means to people. I think Urban Dictionary comes closer with one of its definitions: “A word synonymous with acknowledgement, recognition and consideration.” Because really when we ask for respect, that is usually what we are asking for. We’re asking to be acknowledged that we are also human beings. We are asking to ... Read More »

Seven Creative Christmas Activities for Parents

As you may have noticed, Christmas is right around the corner. For those who have children or grandchildren, the holidays can be a great season of frenetic activity, parties, lights, decorations, shopping and more. But sometimes you want to spend quality time together that doesn’t involve leaving the house and won’t break the bank. What’s a parent to do? Below are seven activities you can do with your children when you have an afternoon free or when you’ve cleaned up from dinner and want to do something different to celebrate ... Read More »

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