• Acts 14:8-28

    Acts 14:8-28

    Sometimes I feel like everyone is talking, but no one is really listening. We hear everything through the filters of our own experience and sometimes it seems we are speaking two entirely different languages.

  • Acts 13:42-14:7

    Acts 13:42-14:7

    Because of the abundant presence of the Holy Spirit in their lives, Paul and Barnabas are overflowing with happiness. Paul and Barnabas find their joy, their happiness, their self-worth, and even their ministry effectiveness not from anything they say or do or accomplish, but from the Holy Spirit’s presence in their lives.

  • Acts 13:14-41

    Acts 13:14-41

    Through Jesus EVERYONE who believes is put in right relationship with God! Regardless of race, gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, faith tradition, social class, or any other qualification (or disqualification) you could possibly imagine, through Jesus EVERYONE who believes is put in right relationship with God! That is, indeed, Good News!

  • Acts 13:4-13

    Acts 13:4-13

    Our main focus today is the pro-counsel’s advisor or wizard who wanted to prevent Barnabas and Saul from sharing with Paulus.  Interesting that Saul calls on the Holy Spirit to invoke blindness on the wizard just as he had been blinded at his conversion earlier.  Nothing to miss here.  Paulus was converted and full of enthusiasm for the Word.  

  • Acts 12:18-13:3

    Acts 12:18-13:3

    God overcomes.  God wins the war.  God provides hope and saves those who need God most.  We need to understand that God has no limits.  God wins, always.  It’s the timing that we have a problem with!

  • Acts 12:1-17

    Acts 12:1-17

    I wonder, if privilege and comfort leads to complacency. How might my faith be deeper, stronger, more adventurous if it came with risk? How might I depend on God more, if my next sermon might lead to imprisonment, or worse?

  • Acts 11:19-30

    Acts 11:19-30

    When we as believers are filled with the Holy Spirit and we actively share our love and faith with others who are different than us, then God’s amazing grace and the growth of the church will have no limits.  This limitless reach can be visualized by the endless horizon of the ocean.

  • Acts 11:1-18

    Acts 11:1-18

    Oh, that the Spirit will open our eyes and ears to God’s will for our lives, our community and our church.  That we will worship God together without divisions.

  • Acts 10:23b-48

    Acts 10:23b-48

    God does not favor individuals because of their station in life, their nationality or their material possessions. He does, however, respect their character and judge their work.

  • Acts 10:1-23a

    Acts 10:1-23a

    I am watching and listening for the Spirit. I am willing to respond to the Spirit’s call. I hope you will join me in watching for and listening for the Spirit to guide us as a church. May we be so courageous to go where the Spirit leads and do what the Spirit calls us to do.

  • Acts 9:32-43

    Acts 9:32-43

    Miracles performed by the apostles served a very important purpose: to authenticate their message that Jesus was the one, true Lord and Savior. Jesus came to save sinners and to restore our relationship with God. Peter’s acts are symbolic of the love and mercy that God has for us. 

  • Acts 9:23-25

    Acts 9:23-25

    Rejection and persecution are unfair and lamentable. Yet, these emotional, human experiences are, at times, byproducts of following Christ. Truly living a Christian life is not a popularity contest; it is a life of sacrifice, struggle, and hurt. We are called to be the hands, voices, and feet of Christ in difficult circumstances.

  • Acts 9:1-22

    Acts 9:1-22

    God didn’t, hasn’t, doesn’t, won’t take “no” for an answer. When God calls, God already knows our objections, our feelings of inadequacy, our prone-ness to disobedience, our fears. God tolerates our objections, already knowing we have them, and the call remains. God doesn’t give up so easily!

  • Acts 8:26-40

    Acts 8:26-40

    Today’s devotion is written by Marsee Perkins. When I was young, one of the most popular TV shows was a soap opera titled “The Guiding Light.”  Today’s verses called this title to mind.  In them, we encounter an Ethiopian eunuch sitting in his carriage at the side of the road reading and trying to understand […]

  • Acts 8:4-25

    Acts 8:4-25

    For years, Peter and John, and the rest of the disciples, were raised to despise and avoid Samaritans. Now, transformed by the Holy Spirit, they overcame a lifetime of prejudice and hate, and shared the most precious gift they had – the gift of the Holy Spirit.

  • Acts 7:51 – 8:3

    Acts 7:51 – 8:3

    fuubutsushi.  Children, poets, and prophets give life its due attentive diligence, and so see and feel the subtle changing of a season with the first whisper of atmospheric shift.  In other words, the neuroplasticity of our poets, prophets, and children empower them to lead the way in discernment of the Holy Spirit, She who is always inviting us into New Life.

  • Acts 7:30-50

    Acts 7:30-50

    God cannot be localized in a temple built by human hands no matter how grand and beautiful.  All creation is the temple that God himself made.  God desires to live among his human partners and rule the world through them.

  • Acts 7:2-29

    Acts 7:2-29

    God never limits himself geographically to one dwelling place or locality. Even in the distant land of Mesopotamia, God was present with Abraham.

  • Acts 6:8-7:1

    Acts 6:8-7:1

    The Holy Spirit calls us to act, to do.  Stephen, “full of grace and power,” was full of the Holy Spirit who fully worked in his life. He carried out God’s purpose by leaning into his gift of speaking.  The Holy Spirit is the very means through which we are to accomplish God’s work here on Earth with one another.

  • Acts 6:1-7

    Acts 6:1-7

    Have you ever noticed how quickly, when we’re displeased or dissatisfied, we seem to need to blame or scapegoat someone? Rather than simply expressing our concerns, we look for someone to accuse.

  • Acts 5:27-42

    Acts 5:27-42

    Peter and the apostles were defiantly bold when challenged by the Pharisee council. In spite of verbal abuse and physical floggings, they moved forward with constancy, sharing the news of God’s grace through the life example of Jesus. How can we, as followers of Christ, possibly measure up to this?

  • Acts 5:12-26

    Acts 5:12-26

    We fall prey to jealousy, insecurity, and division. We sometimes fail to consider that God could be working through other people beyond ourselves to do something new in this world. We hold fast to our certainty and traditions instead of celebrating the new life happening all around us.

  • Acts 5:1-11

    Acts 5:1-11

    When you tell people you are a Christian, what sort of reaction do you get nowadays? Are you lauded for your presumed faithfulness and loving-kindness, or are you primarily associated with the murder of Indigenous peoples, racism, homophobia, sexism … etc?

  • Acts 4:23-37

    Acts 4:23-37

    In this fragile, divisive world in which we are living, I believe the Holy Spirit to calling on each of us to speak boldly about a God who loves all people, who heals the broken and who brings justice and peace. 

  • Acts 4:1-22

    Acts 4:1-22

    Think of a time when you were “imprisoned,” marginalized, excluded, or shunned by others.

  • Acts 3:17-26

    Acts 3:17-26

    The invitation is for each of us, for First Church, and for the world…. to experience a refreshing when we repent and embrace the forgiveness and acceptance of God.

  • Acts 3:1-16

    Acts 3:1-16

    The Spirit does the unexpected. The Spirit reveals unknown, unanticipated possibilities. The Spirit amazes and surprises.

  • Acts 2:36-47

    Acts 2:36-47

    As modern-day Christians, we face situations in which our loyalties might flip away from Jesus. Our society covets wealth and power. The competition to get the most of both puts things over people and flies in the face of Jesus’ teachings. God placed Jesus squarely in front of us as our savior and lord.

  • Acts 2:29-35

    Acts 2:29-35

    God reaches out in an infinite number of ways to connect with me at any given moment.

  • Acts 2:22-28

    Acts 2:22-28

    The tomb is an empty womb. This is our anchor in the current. This is the substance of our hope.

  • Acts 2:14-21

    Acts 2:14-21

    The Holy Spirit can come upon YOU – with your sexual orientation, gender identity, race, ethnicity, national origin, immigration status, age, faith history, marital status, physical ability, cognitive ability, educational level, and socioeconomic status, etc. – AND empower you to prophesy, see visions, and dream.

  • Acts 2:1-13

    Acts 2:1-13

    Imagine a large gathering of celebration….

  • Acts 1:12-26

    Acts 1:12-26

    This set of verses finds the apostles heading back from the Mount of Olives to Jerusalem and making the climb; likely weary, to the room where they were staying. They continued to gather and pray as a group, a group that included women and even Mary, Jesus’ mother.

  • Day 1 – Acts 1:1-11

    Day 1 – Acts 1:1-11

    Waiting is hard. Waiting in traffic is hard. Waiting for test results can be hard. Waiting for an acceptance letter is hard. Waiting to meet Mr or Mrs. Right can be hard. Waiting for God can be especially hard.

About First Church…

The vision of the First United Methodist Church of Orlando is to,


Basically, just three simple words: SEEKLOVESERVE.

To “seek” means, “the desire to find or obtain.”  At First Church, we seek God through prayer, study, worship, and discipleship. Psalm 53:2 says, “God looks down from heaven on humans to see if anyone is wise, to see if anyone seeks God.”

To “serve” means, “to render or assist, or be of use.” We serve people, inside and outside of the church, through warm hospitality, helpful service, and generosity.  Galatians 5:13 says, “Serve each other through love.”

Love is at the core of both seeking and serving and central to all we are and do as followers of Jesus Christ. Jesus said the first and greatest of all commandments is (Luke 10:27), “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your being, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ The second is this, ‘You will love your neighbor as yourself.’” Jesus is the self-definition of this kind of love, exemplified by his sacrificial death on the cross. We are called to exemplify that love in words and deeds.

First Church Orlando

We specifically believe God has called First Church to SEEK, LOVE, & SERVE at the urban core of Downtown Orlando. First Church is uniquely, centrally placed at the intersections of government, the arts, commerce, education, and culture. The cross in our logo also resembles the points of a compass, with arrow points directing us outward toward our neighbors. We believe our calling is to SEEK, LOVE & SERVE, as we intersect and engage each unique element of the Downtown community.

Our vision and calling are to SEEK, LOVE, & SERVE.  

Downtown Orlando is our mission field.

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