Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Day 36 of Lent 2018

1 Peter 5:6

Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.

Today is day 36 of the 40 Days of our Lenten reading plan (looks like the plan will have 47 days because the Sundays didn’t count). I hope you have stayed with us. I veered off of the online plan and am finishing the plan myself. Today’s passage is about humbling ourselves. This is not easy for many if not most of us. It is what we as Christians are called to do.

Lent is typically a time to give something up – to stop a bad habit – to deny self – to dig deeper into our walk with Jesus. Today we want to read what Peter had to say about humbling ourselves before God. As I mentioned previously – humbling ourselves is not easy for many. Peter also gives us instructions about other parts of our Christian walk in today’s larger passage. Continue reading

March 21, 2018 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Prayer, Theology | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Day 35 of Lent 2018

Philippians 3:10-11

10 I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11 and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.

Today is day 35 of the 40 Days of our Lenten reading plan (looks like the plan will have 47 days because the Sundays didn’t count). I hope you have stayed with us. I veered off of the online plan and am finishing the plan myself. Today’s passage is about digging deeper into our faith – our trust of Jesus.

Lent is typically a time to give something up – to stop a bad habit – to deny yourself – to dig deeper into our walk with Jesus. Today we want to read what Paul had to say about getting to know Christ better. He was so into getting to know Jesus that he sought to suffer for Jesus and even die for Jesus. He wanted to experience all that knowing Jesus entailed. Continue reading

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

Day 34 of Lent 2018

Matthew 6:16

When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show others they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full.

Today is day 34 of the 40 Days of our Lenten reading plan. I hope you have stayed with us. I veered off of the online plan and am finishing the plan myself. Today’s passage is about fasting.

Lent is typically a time to give something up – to stop a bad habit – to deny yourself – to dig deeper into your walk with Jesus. Fasting is one way to do this. Fasting is denying yourself of something. You can fast from food or a certain type of food. You can fast from technology (a youth pastor I worked with did this one Lent) – or you can fast from social media. Not only are we to deny ourselves of something – we are to replace that item with more of Jesus. For instance – if you are fasting from something – when you feel tempted to eat it or do it – we should spend time praying or digging into God’s Word. Continue reading

March 19, 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 33 of Lent 2018

Joel 2:12

“Even now,” declares the Lord, “return to me with all your heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning.”

Today is day 33 of the 40 Days of Lent reading plan (I believe the Sundays were not suppose to count as days so we will have more than 40 days). We’re coming to the end of the reading plan as we head toward the cross. My prayer is that we will be drawn into a deeper relationship with Jesus during this Lenten season.

We read a passage last Sunday in the message from Jeremiah. Jeremiah 29:13 – You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. Today’s passage is along the same line – we are called to return to God with all our heart. Continue reading

March 18, 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 32 of Lent 2018

John 16:8-11

8 When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment: 9 in regard to sin, because men do not believe in me; 10 in regard to righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; 11 and in regard to judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned.

Today is day 32 of the 40 Days of Lent reading plan on www.youversion.com. We’re coming to the end of the reading plan as we head toward the cross. I hope you have enjoyed the reading plan. I know I have enjoyed it.

The Holy Spirit – the Counselor – will convict us of our sin and convict others of their disbelief. I know when the Spirit is working on my heart – and I know we all do! We should be open to the Holy Spirit’s movement in our lives. The Holy Spirit is God with us today. Continue reading

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

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