Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Husbands – We’re Called To Love Our Wives

Ephesians 5:25

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her. NIV

Brothers – do you love your wives? Is loving your wife first and foremost in your mind? I posted something this week on Facebook – the day some women didn’t show up for work. Something I ponder. Why would my wife want to be equal with me? From where I sit that would be a demotion in status on her part! I don’t think of my wife as an equal – she is far above and beyond me – I treasure her.

Husbands, go all out in your love for your wives, exactly as Christ did for the church — a love marked by giving, not getting. The Message

Too many people don’t get this far in the passage.  Most folks get stuck with the 22nd verse.

Ephesians 5:22 – Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord. Continue reading

March 10, 2017 Posted by | Build, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Lenten Thought, Marriage, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

As For Me And Mine!

Joshua 24:15

But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.

RayMcDFamily traditions – they create memories. In a few months my family will try to enjoy a family weekend without mom or dad. Our family traditionally returns to my mother’s home town for a family reunion. I have many memories – growing up – revolving around this annual trek. My children do as well. Other families have barbecues or go to a ball game or open the pool on this weekend. What are your memories for Memorial weekend?

Family traditions – they create memories. What memories can you remember? Special memories developed around what your family did/does on the 4th of July (cookout at my brother’s home) – Labor Day (wear work clothes to church) – Thanksgiving (serving meals) – Christmas (family night at our home) – and other special days. What about something special for your birthday or anniversary (some even celebrate the anniversary of their first date). I know someone who makes memories at Disney – not only annually but often each year! Continue reading

February 17, 2017 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Marriage, Personal, Prayer, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Let Our Light So Shine

Matthew 5:16

In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.

112015 Ray McDonaldJust a personal note – today is my birthday!  I’m 61 today and thankful that God has allowed me to live this long.  I also want to thank my parents – family – and friends for putting up with me all of these years (or as long as you’ve known me.

OK – I must admit it up front – I am an Orioles’ fan – I mean it – even when we suffered though 14 straight losing seasons – I love me some O’s.  They have returned to some winning of late and now we have gotten use to it again. Ever since I was a young lad – in 1966 when they won the World Series and I was 11 years old collecting baseball cards – I have followed the O’s.  I remember the time I met Eddie Murray – it was a highlight for me.

I follow them closely – I listen to their games – even those on the West Coast late at night (just ask my wife).  I have an O’s jacket – some hats and other items.  I have baseball cards of some of the O’s greats of old like Brooks Robinson – Boog Powell – Frank Robinson – Mark Belanger – Jim Palmer – Paul Blair – Dave McNally – and more.  I’m excited about my O’s – the coming season – and I let others know it.  I really think they will go far this year – even though some think they will be in last place in their division.  They have won more games than any American League team since 2012 I think. Continue reading

March 4, 2016 Posted by | Bring, Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Daily Prayer, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Lenten Thought, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

God’s Special Possession

1 Peter 2:9

But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.

112015 Ray McDonaldI have four fantastic grandchildren. All four are special to me. One is the first-born and came into my life during a time when I needed her most. One has no fear and the cutest curls. One has red hair and cuddles with her Pop (of course they all do). One is our baby for now – and has such a smile – it will melt your heart! All four of them are beautiful like their GC and their moms. They are all special to me – not possessions – but rather treasures.

I play basketball a few mornings a week. Of late I have been having a hard time. My 3-point shot – which has never been a problem – has left me for spurts – and it is getting frustrating. I went through a couple of games the last two weeks without hitting even one and some games I simply passed up on taking them – because my confidence is waning. The coolest thing – most days I am the oldest person and often the younger players cheer me on – even from the other team that day. They encourage me to take me shot – even giving up shots they could take to give me a good look. One of the best players that play with us often gives up his shot so that I can take my shot. Wednesday morning one of the young men who can hit 3’s like few others – was cheering my shots and another player who hits 3’s often – playing on the other team – was cheering me on as well. Again – not possessions but treasures for sure. A good group of guys! As I turn 61 – not sure how much longer I will last – but it is still fun enough to deal with the aches and pains that come with playing. Continue reading

March 3, 2016 Posted by | Build, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Lenten Thought, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Gift from God

Ephesians 2:8

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—

RayBlogToday is my birthday – I turn 58 today.  I can’t believe I’m as old as I am.  My oldest daughter was out with us Friday night for dinner and thought I was in my young 50’s – she even called me old!  It seems just like yesterday that I received Jesus as my Lord and Savior (46 years this August).  It seems just like yesterday I was in High School (40 year reunion this spring).  It seems just like yesterday that I entered the ministry (36 years this summer).  It seems just like yesterday I was married (33 years this August).  It seems just like yesterday that our first child was born (30 later this month).  It seems just like yesterday that – well – you get the picture.

Now that we have run through a review of my past – let’s write something about the gifts we receive when we have a birthday or some other special occasion.  This year I left nothing to chance when it comes to my birthday presents.  When the Baltimore Ravens won the AFC Championship I bought a hat to remember it by!  When they won the Super Bowl I bought a hat to remember it by!  I also bought a jersey – the jersey of the highest paid player in the NFL as of today when he signs his contract – Joe Flacco.  So my daughters only need to chip in for the hats and my mother and others can buy me the jersey.  I won’t be taking these gifts back to exchange! Can you remember a special gift you received for a birthday or other special occasion?  I remember my first new bike at Christmas – I got a red one and my sister got a blue one.

Continue reading

March 4, 2013 Posted by | Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, From the Pastor, Lenten Thought, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

   

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