Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Gifting of the Church – Part V

Ephesians 4:11-16

11 It was he (Christ) who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, 12 to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. 14 Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming. 15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ. 16 From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.

RayMcDThis is the fifth and final part of this series. Today we will review verse 16 and conclude this brief study about the gifting of the church.

The gifting of the church is essential to mature us and to draw folks together. It is also part of what unifies the Body. 16 From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.

When I recover from my surgery I plan to get back to the gym and to basketball (and of course golf). I know that there will be lots of sore muscles and aches and pains. Hot showers and I will be good friends. My muscles and ligaments and joints are going to be taxed and I hope – growing – and getting stronger. It will be about 3 months between my last time in the gym and when I get back. As I lose weight and start to get in better shape (I know round is a shape – I said so in a message – but not a desired shape) the aches and pains will get less and sleep will returned – lol. Continue reading

March 7, 2017 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, From the Pastor, Leadership, Lenten Thought, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

It Is All About Grace

Ephesians 2:5

…it is by grace you have been saved.

RayMcDI love it when I win something. I’m all about competitions. For instance – I enjoy hearing someone say cover Ray when I’m playing basketball and lining up for a three-point shot. Or don’t leave Ray as the person on me leaves to help double team someone else. It means someone respects my ability (as meager as it may be).

I love it when I win something. I’m all about competitions. For instance – I love the challenges on my Fitbit – both the personal challenges and the group challenges. I love it when this old pastor can at times keep up with the younger pastors in a Fitbit pastors group.

I love it when I win something. I’m all about competitions. For instance – I love playing golf with a friend of mine – we are fairly equal in our abilities (we can both play a round in the 70’s or as high as the low 90’s from time to time). When I come out on top – it feels good – I know I have beaten a decent golfer. (I sure hope my torn rotor cuff heals quickly.) Continue reading

February 20, 2017 Posted by | Build, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Look Out For Others

1 Corinthians 10:24

No one should seek their own good, but the good of others.

RayMcDI know I use sports a lot – and if you are not into sports – you might be lost at times. Sorry – that is who I am and how I relate. I try to use non-sport analogies when I can but the early Biblical writers used sports so I figure it is OK.

In team sports – the traditional statement is – there is no I in team. In other words – we’re a team and the team goals and the team success is more important than individual goals or success. Teams that work together often beat teams with a super star or two because they get everyone involved and everyone trying their hardest. Often when there are ball hogs on teams the rest of the team stands around and waits for them to do their thing.

Yesterday – playing basketball – I was on fire! I was hitting three’s at a 4 out of 5 clip (80%)! It seemed like every time I shot the ball – I was hitting. My teammates began to expect me to shoot – which I probably should have more than I did (I usually don’t need encouragement to shoot). I must admit though – what I got the most kick out of yesterday morning was hitting a few teammates with passes that put them in great position to score. One teammate probably wasn’t expecting me to pass and the ball hit him in the chest and it bounced away. That one didn’t feel so good but there was the time when I went up for a shot (a 3 of course) and everyone on the other team turned for the rebound (if there was one) and a teammate broke for the basket too. I hit him in stride for a layup! Continue reading

January 19, 2017 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Aim Small Miss Small

Philippians 3:13-14

13 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

RayMcDOne thing they teach in basketball is to keep your eye on the rim – on the basket. When driving to the hoop we’re trained to keep our eyes on the basket – rather than on something else. When we dribble the ball – we are taught to keep our head up and look around to take in the whole court – trusting that the ball will return to our hand as we dribble up the court. Keeping our eyes on the goal – the rim – the basket – helps our accuracy on shots. (By the way – by the time this posts – I will have returned to basketball after a two week layoff because of an injury – hope it went well).

My brother loves to hunt (I do too but haven’t for about 6 years – which is another story all together). He practices with his bow through the summer – getting ready for the deer season. In the movie Patriot Mel Gibson used this line – aim small miss small. Many didn’t know what he meant. The idea of aim small miss small is pretty simple. If you aim precisely – at a small area on your target (like the center of the bulls-eye rather than at the whole target) if you are off a little you will still hit your target. Keep your eyes on the target – and a small point on the target. Continue reading

January 18, 2017 Posted by | Build, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Boasting In Christ’s Power

2 Corinthians 12:9

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

RayMcDAs I get physically older – I’m losing muscle mass. I know I don’t have to lose as much muscle mass as I am because I knew a man much older than me who looked like he was in his 30’s or 40’s! Reggie Faust worked out and built muscle – daily. I MUST get back to working out – not just playing basketball and golf.

It is not fun being weaker than I was one day not too long ago (and I was never a powerhouse for sure). My physical strength is deteriorating and I must take action to reverse that trend. Working out in the gym must become a priority once again. Playing basketball Monday morning and will either go to the gym afterward or on Tuesday morning! That is my pledge. Jeff Dibler – you can hold me to this pledge.

As much as I may rebuild some muscle over the next few months – I will never be like Arnold Schwarzenegger! Or even Jeff Dibler! But I can be stronger than I am. Continue reading

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

%d bloggers like this: