Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Seek First The Important Things!

Matthew 6:33

But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

Think about this for a moment. What is the most important thing in your life? Think before you answer – and don’t give me what you wish were most important or think should be most important. Someone once said if you want to know what is really important to a person – just look at the person’s checkbook. I’ll add – take a look at their credit card bills and their online spending too! Do we spend more money on things that are really only peripheral things in our lives? Do we own that boat or does that boat own us? Are our hobbies that important to our lives?

The Sunday School answer – of course – would be Jesus! Jesus should be most important in our lives. We have been bought and paid for by the blood of the Lamb and He owns us – 1 Corinthians 6:20 – you were bought at a price. At least – God should own us – but at times we act as if we own ourselves. At times we act as if we are more important than God. Continue reading

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May 14, 2018 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Denomination, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

What is Most Important to the UM Church Today?

Matthew 6:33

But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

IMG_0301What is the most important thing for you in your life? Think before you answer – and don’t give me what you wish were most important or think should be most important. Someone once said if you want to know what is really important to a person – look at the person’s checkbook. I’ll add – take a look at their credit card bills and their online spending too! Do we spend more money on things that are really only peripheral things in our lives? Do we own that boat or does that boat own us?

The Sunday School answer – of course – would be Jesus! Jesus should be most important in our lives. We have been bought and paid for by the blood of the Lamb and He owns us – 1 Corinthians 6:20 – you were bought at a price. At least – God should own us – but at times we act as if we own ourselves. Continue reading

May 27, 2015 Posted by | Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Denomination, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Marriage, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

We Were Bought At A Price

1 Corinthians 6:20

…you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.

RayChildOK – my wife says I’m about ready to purchase some new clothes. I’m hovering around 60 pounds lost – my goal in my first year (I’m only into my 4th month since surgery) is 75-100 pounds so I still have some losing to do. When I look at the cost of new clothes – I was kind of hoping I would only need to buy once. I found a company called Trunk Club on Facebook – they will pick out your clothes for you and send them to you – LOL. The style is great (my wife can match clothes for me) but the cost is high. These type of services are for those on the move who cannot take the time or do not have the ability to match clothes and have plenty of money I think.

I might purchase a few pairs of pants – I already bought a couple new shirts – and maybe one new dress jacket – maybe two – to get me through this middle stage of the process. The issue for me is not wanting to spend too much that I feel bad about letting them go in a few months verses not wanting to look like I’m swimming in my clothes now till I do buy. I have gone down 4 sizes in pants – I’m wearing belts I haven’t in years – and my shirts are starting to bag. I’m not complaining mind you – but I hate spending money on clothes – LOL. Continue reading

March 2, 2015 Posted by | Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Lenten Thought, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Who Is the Boss of Us?

1 Corinthians 6:20

You were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.

Yesterday we typed about persevering and running the race – keep pressure on the old self and not allowing it to bubble up and return to the surface (remember the ball example?).  Today we want to remind us that we do not belong to ourselves.

You’re not the boss of me is a common phrase children often use (some adults as well).  Many of us seem to be concerned with who is in charge – who is the boss.  Some of the candidates for youth pastor asked me what the pecking order was on our staff.  When you apply for a job – most of us would like to know who to report to and who can give us directions.

In our Christian life – we might ask this question too – yet there is a simple answer – you were bought at a price.  Jesus is our boss – the boss of us!  He is our Lord and Savior.  He is our Master and our King.  We have been bought and paid for by the blood of the Lamb.

If we walked in this knowledge – we might persevere more in our faith.  If we really thought and practiced Jesus being the boss of us – we might listen to His commandments more – you think?  God did give us commandments – not suggestions.  Jesus did say love the Lord our God with all we had and all we are – right?

Just something to think about today as you go on your way.

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August 12, 2011 Posted by | Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey | , | Leave a comment

Our Witness is More than Mere Jewelry

Romans 6:11

In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.

There use to be a fad going around – where people wore bracelets or other jewelry that had the letters WWJD on them.  Unfortunately – like the fad of wearing the cross – for many it was just a fad or a trendy piece of jewelry.

WWJD stands for What Would Jesus Do.  The original idea was that by wearing these letters we might be reminded to think about what Jesus would do in the situations we find ourselves.  When we reach out to change the radio channel – if we were wearing a bracelet we would see the letters and maybe think – would Jesus listen to this channel?  When we write a check or hand someone our credit card – would Jesus purchase this item.  As we go through life – the WWJD was to remind us to ask ourselves what Jesus would do.  Of course we shouldn’t need a piece of jewelry to remind us of this question.  As Christians – we should have that question on our very heart.  As Christians – bought and paid for by the blood of the lamb – we are to count ourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.

Unfortunately – good intentions don’t always help us stay the course.  Wearing a cross is supposed to remind us of the sacrifice of Christ – some even wearing a crucifix – (a cross with Christ still on it) – to remind them of His suffering and death.  Some wear an empty cross to remind them of his death (the cross) but also the resurrection (the empty cross).  Unfortunately – the cross for many becomes just another piece of jewelry with very little meaning or impact on their daily lives.

We are to count ourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.  To me this means we are to do what would please God – in all that we do – rather than what please us.  We have been bought and paid for by the blood of Christ – thus Christ owns us.  1 Corinthians 6:20 – you were bought at a price.  Therefore honor God with your body.  We are to represent our Lord and Savior – 2 Corinthians 5:20 – We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.

WWJD is more than mere jewelry – it is supposed to be a lifestyle – a way of representing Christ to the world around us!  Please don’t advertise yourself as a Christian if you aren’t at least going to try to live the life of Christ.  It makes it so much harder for those who are trying – to reach the unchurched – the unsaved.  Our witness counts my friends – and our witness is more than mere jewelry!

Just something to think about today as you go on your way.

November 17, 2010 Posted by | Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, From the Pastor, Theology | , , , , , | Leave a comment

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