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When God Reminds You Why You are Serving on a Mission Trip at a Kitchen Table

Note from the editor: In October 2016, a team of nine people traveled to Tappahannock and Montross, Virginia on a United Methodist Volunteers in Mission (UMVIM) Tornado Recovery Mission Trip. This post comes from one of the volunteers, J. Scott Nicholls. When disaster hits, even though it may take a long time, buildings, homes and businesses that were damaged or destroyed by nature can ultimately be rebuilt. Personal belongings can be replaced, though keepsakes cannot. It is hard to see the devastating impact these events have on the “individuals,” both ... Read More »

The Value of Nature

I love taking personality tests. Myers-Briggs, Enneagram—you name it. I love the insights these tests give into who I am and how I am uniquely created. Most of the time, the assessments are right on the money. I’m an ENFJ, no question! But sometimes I struggle with the results. About two years ago I took a personal values assessment. The results of that test nagged at me, and ever since then I’ve been on a mission to “fix it.” Here’s why: at the very bottom of the list of 50 ... Read More »

Why Do We Go on Mission Trips?

Editor’s Note: In May 2016, a group of Floris UMC adults traveled to South Carolina to assist in rebuilding houses affected by recent floods. The following is a blog submitted by those group members. When we pulled up to our worksite, it was about 100 degrees outside. We arrived at a small, one-story house that had been victim to a flood that damaged the walls and floors and left the roof barely functional. After looking around a bit, the veteran mission trip members in our group hit the ground running. ... Read More »

A World Without Color

Have you ever had a conversation with someone about which of your five senses would be the most difficult to lose? I know many who say that the sense of sound—conversations, music, alarms—would be difficult for them to lose, but for me it would definitely be the sense of vision. Scientifically speaking, eyes have cones, which are what help us identify different colors. Humans have three cones usually. Those who are colorblind have only two cones and cannot see all the colors most of us can see. But did you ... Read More »

Isaac’s Story

On Columbus Day weekend of 2015, a team of 14 people from Floris United Methodist Church headed to Sheepshead Bay in Brooklyn, N.Y. to help those affected by Hurricane Sandy in 2012. The following post was submitted by one of the members of the Hurricane Sandy Relief Team. Most of our team is engaged in various small projects renovating a basement previously used as a place of business. The owner is an elderly man of the Jewish faith named Isaac. He and his wife live in the residence above the ... Read More »

Some Thoughts

As we near the end of our trip here in Montana, I would like to take a few moments to make some observations: One of the things that we have done during this trip is read Wendell Berry poems about Sabbath and the Psalms about Creation.  Both have given me an opportunity to contemplate the importance of Creation and Sabbath in my life. The Church should be a place of intentional proactivity in areas of justice, mercy, and compassion.  Oftentimes, it seems as though the Church is behind on the ... Read More »

Community by Tim Ward

Earlier this week, we had the opportunity to meet with one of the top scientists in the world on global climate change. It was a really exciting conversation where he laid out all of the changes that have occurred in the Yellowstone ecosystem in the last 100 years. The data is staggering. The movement of animals down from their normal places in the park to get new food that has disappeared in higher elevations is interesting. He was truly one of those brilliant people who you meet in your life. ... Read More »

Hope by Jake McGlothin

On Sunday, we had the pleasure of worshipping at Pine Creek United Methodist Church, a few minutes from our camp.  We experienced great community worship and high hospitality from the members. We also had the pleasure of an unveiling of a stained glass project that was completed by a church member.  The project commemorated the Pine Creek Fire that occurred last year.  The fire destroyed a significant amount of timber, land, and homes in and around their community, but thankfully, the church was spared. This fire impacted the entire community ... Read More »

Doing and Being by Jake McGlothin

I am really good at doing.  I have created this wonderful system of immediate tasks lists, future items to consider, accompanying schedules, and projects that we have to do as a congregation in order for ministries and programs to occur.  I am quite proud of it. With a full-time church job, a family, and studying at Wesley Seminary, I am almost always doing something.  I exercise, run errands, and the like.   My calendar is filled with things to do and people to meet. I am really good at doing.  I ... Read More »

God is All Around Us by Tim Ward

Our official big adventure has begun.  Many of you might be asking why Jake and I are away on this amazing adventure in Yellowstone.  As part of our seminary studies, we are required to do an immersion into a culture different than our own.  Let me tell you, I do not know somewhere else we could go where we would experience a different culture. We are in cabins that have no heat (a wood stove is in the middle of the room).  The bathrooms are two city blocks away.  Lest ... Read More »

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