A Pew Perspective

Sneaking in the back door during the opening hymn, I was trying to remember if I had ever worshipped at my church on Sunday morning in a pew. I probably had—just couldn’t remember. Usually, I was up front in the chancel area with the other worship leaders—reading scripture, praying, giving an offertory meditation or occasionally…

We Need Each Other

In July, I had the great privilege of joining our Senior High students and adults on their mission trip to Indianapolis, Indiana. As many know, I have lots of experience with children birth – sixth grade, but I have always been a little intimidated by them once they move on to junior high and high…

The Face of Christ?

“Community is like a large mosaic. . . . We can do little with individual stones except compare them and judge their beauty and value. When, however, all these little stones are brought together in one big mosaic, portraying the face of Christ, who would ever question the importance of any one of them? If…

Love Your Neighbor as Yourself

The second commandment, from Mark 12:31, tells us to love our neighbor as ourselves. In previous years, our church has hosted a Taste of Africa luncheon. One of my fondest memories was the sense of excitement that many members of FUMC Hurst experienced leading up to the event. There was a buzz about the upcoming…

Buttercups and Weeds

If you have been on a highway anywhere in North Texas recently, you have likely noticed the pink and white flowers that my grandmother called “buttercups”.  During my years of working as a floral designer, I learned that these are actually Evening Primrose (Oenothera speciosus Rosea). They bloom April through June across much of the…

My Happy Heart

While I always enjoy church-wide Art Night and church-wide Game Night, I’ve been craving a church-wide event that deepens our connections with God, our connections with one another and is meaningful for all involved. Therefore, you must know that my heart was SO happy on Sunday evening at Let Us Pray. I loved watching children,…

No Agenda

Sometimes I get an idea, and I can’t let it go, and it ends up with me doing things like requesting to be friends with everyone on Facebook who has the same name that I do. There are about 20 of us Matt/Matthew/Mateo Ybañeze’s on Facebook. It’s my own name and I still don’t know…

Stronger Together

“What Iconic Movie Heroine Are You Based on Your Myers-Briggs Type?”  Those words came across my Facebook feed this week, and I instantly clicked on the link.  I needed to know.  Which heroine am I?  I was really hoping that the answer was going to be someone exciting like Princess Leia.  But, according to this…

How Churches are Helping African Immigrants Settle in America

First United Methodist Church of Hurst (FUMCH) offers a Ministry with African Immigrants. The purpose of this ministry is to welcome African newcomers, give them hope and provide them with a sense of belonging. The following story is an example of how FUMCH assisted an African family after they immigrated to the United States.  Bagimu,…

Bigger than Ourselves

One of the things I absolutely love about being a United Methodist is our connectional system.  Often when I meet a new person who happens to be United Methodist, we get to talking and end up having many different points of connection with different people. The comment is usually made, “What a small world!” and…

Handprints of the Saints

I went back to FUMC Boyd today for the funeral of a dear friend named Mary. Whenever I am in that sanctuary, I am flooded with memories. Everywhere I look, I see the handprints of so many of the Saints who have gone before. Mary and my mother both loved the church and loved to…

Bathrobe Friend

During my freshman year in college, my high school youth director asked me to be a sponsor on a junior high youth retreat. Because it looked to me like the sponsors in my youth group always had WAY more fun than the kids, I jumped at the chance. When we got to the camp—can’t remember…