Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Day 8 of Lent 2018

Matthew 22:1-2

1 Jesus spoke to them again in parables, saying: 2 “The kingdom of heaven is like a king who prepared a wedding banquet for his son.”

Today is day 8 of the 40 Days of Lent reading plan on www.youversion.com. I hope you are keeping up. Today’s reading is another parable.

Parables are stories that Jesus used to share truths. Parables are not real life stories – usually – yet they tell a real life truth. They are great examples of putting the Scripture to work – an application of the word of truth in our lives.

What does this parable say to us? Yesterday’s parable was about a vineyard? What did it mean to us? What Biblical truth do we read in the words of today’s parable? Leave some comments as you read so that others can read and share as well! Continue reading

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February 21, 2018 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Lenten Thought, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Day 7 of Lent 2018

Mark 12:1a

He then began to speak to them in parables: “A man planted a vineyard. He put a wall around it, dug a pit for the winepress and built a watchtower. Then he rented the vineyard to some farmers and went away on a journey.”

Today is day 7 of the 40 Days of Lent reading plan on www.youversion.com. I hope you are keeping up. Today’s reading is a parable. I hope we are enjoying our time together during Lent.

Parables are stories that Jesus used to share truths. Parables are not real life stories usually – yet they tell a real life truth. They are great examples of putting the Scripture to work – an application of the word of truth in our lives. I love reading Parables and seeking God’s truth in them.

What does this parable say to us today? What Biblical truth do we read in the words of this parable? Leave some comments as you read so that others can read and share as well! Jesus often used agricultural examples in His teachings because He lived in an agricultural community. The truths would stick with His hearers longer if they were told in stories they would remember.  Continue reading

February 20, 2018 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, From the Pastor, Leadership, Lenten Thought, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Day 6 of Lent 2018

Matthew 21:23

Jesus entered the temple courts, and, while he was teaching, the chief priests and the elders of the people came to him. “By what authority are you doing these things?” they asked. “And who gave you this authority?”

Day 6 of the 40 Days of Lent reading plan on www.youversion.com. I hope you have been able to keep up or used yesterday to catch up. Today’s reading has a number of points or directions – and I have chosen the first verse – when the chief priests and elders asked Jesus by what authority He spoke.

Isn’t it often like this? When someone doesn’t like what we say – rather than try to debate what we say – they try to discredit the messenger rather than the message. Maybe our spouse is making a good point and rather than stay on topic – we decide to question how loud they are speaking or the tone they are using – deflecting the discussion to something else. Maybe our child is trying to get a valid point across and instead of staying the course – we complain about how they are talking to us or ask who they think they are to say something like that! Continue reading

February 19, 2018 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Lenten Thought, Marriage, Personal, Theology | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Day 5 of Lent 2018

Ephesians 4:22-23

22 You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23 to be made new in the attitude of your minds;

Our prayer is that the old self will begin to fade as we walk toward the cross this Lenten season – and that more and more we will look like Jesus. We also pray that our attitudes will be set on Christ and on nothing else. During our walk to the cross this Lent – let us seek His face more clearly and desire His grace more dearly.

In the 40 Days of Lent reading plan on www.youversion.com – today is an off day. But – what are off days! Days we can use to catch up! Today I will remind you of the four previous days and give you a chance to catch up in the reading plan if you so desire. Continue reading

February 18, 2018 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, From the Pastor, Leadership, Lenten Thought, Personal, Prayer, Theology | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Day 4 of Lent 2018

Mark 11:23

“I tell you the truth, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him.

Day 4 of the Lenten reading is a remarkable (did you see what I did there) passage. It holds a number of curiosities for me. I only have time today to deal with the above verse. There is the cursing of the fig tree – the overturning of the tables of the money changers in the temple – the declaration that the house of the Lord was a place of prayer not a ten of robbers – the withered tree – and today’s verse – “I tell you the truth, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him.

I could spend a week in this section of Scripture and still not fully unpack it – I’m sure. What the final statement says – that if we believe and not doubt mountains will be moved to the sea is powerful. Continue reading

February 17, 2018 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Daily Prayer, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, From the Pastor, Leadership, Lenten Thought, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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