Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

We Can Take Nothing With Us!

1 Timothy 6:7

For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it.

RayMcDI you ever heard the phrase – you can’t take it with you? This is usually a response to someone being tight or conservative with money. They are usually being encouraged to spend more – or to spend at all – because – you can’t take it with you!

In all of the years as a pastor and all of the funerals (40 years now) I’ve celebrated – I’ve never once seen a Brink’s truck or a U-Haul following the hearse to the cemetery. I know in the olden days – when Pharaohs or Kings would die – they would be buried with their riches. This was partly because they believed the Pharaoh or King would need their wealth in the afterlife or the next life.

King Tutankhamen (King Tut) for instance had a massive amount of wealth buried with him. On February 16 – 1923 – his sealed tomb was opened. Ancient Egyptians saw their pharaohs or kings as gods. They preserved their bodies after death. Many tombs were found and robbed. Continue reading

August 31, 2016 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

We Are Chosen People!

Colossians 3:12

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.

RayMcDI use a lot of athletic examples. Sorry if that doesn’t work for you. Most of us can remember recess in Elementary school. Do we remember when they would pick up teams for kickball or dodgeball? Do we remember being the last chosen or not being chosen at all? For those who have been chosen last or not at all – I assume it was not a good feeling for sure. We all like to be chosen – even if only for a kickball game.

It is a good feeling – being chosen. There were times I was the one picking up sides (in elementary school). At times I might be the first or second player picked by someone else. Either way it felt good to know your services were wanted on someone’s team. I remember the same feeling when picked for teams in the classroom too – like for a spelling bee or a math competition. When picked – we were expected to give our very best to the team effort. That would mean playing hard at whatever sport or coming up with the answer to the math problem before the other team. I rarely got picked for the spelling bee teams but did get picked for the math competition or the debate team. Continue reading

August 30, 2016 Posted by | Build, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

God Can See Us!

Genesis 16:13

She gave this name to the Lord who spoke to her: “You are the God who sees me,” for she said, “I have now seen the One who sees me.”

RayMcDAnyone reading this blog post old enough to remember the TV show Romper Room? It started airing a couple of years before I was born and was franchised (rather than syndicated) – which means local stars were used wherever the show aired. It began in Baltimore and local talent worked the show.

What I remember most about this show was the Magic Mirror – through which the host could see the many children who were watching. Children were encouraged (parents of course) to mail in first names and the host would say I see Billy – I see Mary – I see Sally – etc. during the show to signify the children watching. I really thought she could see right through her mirror and into my home and I waited to hear my name. Continue reading

August 29, 2016 Posted by | Build, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Time Is Coming

2 Timothy 4:3

For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine.

RayMcDHave you ever been warned about something that was pending – something that was going to happen in the future? I had a teacher who would often say – mark my word – and then tell us something that was going to happen – like – mark my word – this will be on the next test. It wasn’t always so – but it did make us study more.

Maybe as a parent you have said something like this or your parents did – mark my word – if you do that again you will get punished. Maybe it was like this – if you don’t stop fighting – if you make me get out of my chair – if you don’t get up now – if you don’t eat all your food – than “whatever” was going to happen. This too didn’t always happen (for some of us) but it probably – for a few times – change our behavior.

Paul gives us warning in today’s passage – 2 Timothy 4:3 – For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.
Continue reading

August 26, 2016 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Denomination, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

I Don’t Fully Understand God

Isaiah 55:8

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord.

RayMcDI’m typing on a MacBook Pro at work. It is an amazing computer with technology I cannot completely understand. I have an iPad I used this morning to celebrate the life service for a 78-year-old woman. My iPhone connects to both of them – but don’t ask me how? The MacBook Pro is hardwired to a router that is connected to the modem we have for the Internet. Neither the iPad nor iPhone are hardwired – they both are connected through our Wi-Fi or through a cellular system. I’m not sure how it all works – but I use them all to write these daily devotions – preach each sermon – search the Bible – keep up with social media – send e-mails – and much more. The point is – I don’t have to understand something to get use out of it.

I’m very tech savvy using devices – but not too tech savvy with how things work. For instance – I use to work on my cars in the 70’s but haven’t tried since – as they have become more and more complicated. I have a friend who is an excellent mechanic and he has worked on my vehicles for going on 40 years now it seems. Continue reading

August 25, 2016 Posted by | Build, Community, Daily Devotion, Daily Prayer, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Holy Spirit, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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