Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Jesus Will Help Us From Losing Heart

2 Corinthians 4:16

Therefore we do not lose heart

photo on 6-11-19 at 10.52 amHave you ever lost heart? There are a number of times I have lost heart. With injuries and age creeping up on me – my sport playing life has changed (I spend more time with golf these days). I love me some basketball – if you didn’t know that fact about me. With two rotator cuff surgeries in back to back springs (2017 & 2018) – I have not played a lot of basketball in the last three years or so. If you ask my wife or my friends – they would tell you I have contemplated leaving the game for good. My orthopedic doctor and my general practitioner even suggested it when I injured my shoulder playing basketball – which led to my last surgery – and the knee issues. I went back this past spring and enjoyed the full-court running (it might help me lose more weight) –  but I’ve given it up I think. For most of my life I have been a 3-point bomber. I would find an open spot and the ball would find me and I would bomb away – hitting a high percentage typically. But – after two shoulder surgeries – gaining some age – and not working out much for two years – my 3-point shot was weak this spring. I actually had to abandon the 3-point shot at first and shot and hit from inside the arc. I got my shooting touch back – but the knees barked! I will not lose heart – even if I have to give up basketball for good! Continue reading

September 3, 2019 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

I Like You – Do You Like Me?

1 John 4:19

We love because he first loved us.

June 2019I remember – when I was a teen – playing the dating game. I dated women from the time I was 16 until I got married at 25 – that’s 9 years. I had two long-term relationships in that time frame and a few short-term ones. As some teens (and young adults) in the dating game – I was insecure at times. Like many men and women in the dating game (not thinking of dating as a game but that seems to be the best word to use) – being insecure about our feelings – I often held out expressing my feelings till the person I was dating expressed their feelings. Remember – when we were in elementary school and they passed the little notes that said – I like you – do you like me? Or was my school the only one that did that note passing thing?

Telling someone you like them or even going the next step and telling someone you love them is a big move. You’re always wondering if they will like you or love you back. I’ve even heard the dreaded – let’s be friends’ line more than once – have you? Continue reading

June 18, 2019 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Daily Prayer, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

I Will Not Lose Heart

2 Corinthians 4:16

Therefore we do not lose heart

Ray 2018Have you ever lost heart? There are a number of times I have lost heart. With injuries and age creeping up on me – my sport playing life has changed (I spend more time with golf these days). I love me some basketball – if you didn’t know that fact. With two rotator cuff surgeries the last two springs – I have not played a lot of basketball in the last two years or so. If you ask my wife or my friends – they would tell you I have contemplated leaving the game for good. My doctor even suggested it when I injured my shoulder playing basketball – which led to my last surgery. I went back Monday and enjoyed the full-court running (it might help me lose some weight). For most of my life I have been a 3-point bomber. I would find an open spot and the ball would find me and I would bomb away – hitting a high percentage typically. But – after two shoulder surgeries – gaining some age – and not working out much for two years – my 3-point shot is weak right now. I actually had to abandon the 3-point shot today and shot and hit from inside the arc. I will get my shooting touch back! I will not lose heart! I will keep trying! Continue reading

September 4, 2018 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Marriage, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Love The Lord Our God

Deuteronomy 30:16

For I command you today to love the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to him, and to keep his commands, decrees and laws; then you will live and increase, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land you are entering to possess.

When I was dating – I tried hard to do things that would please the person I was dating. I tried to think what I could do that would make them happy. For some it was flowers – for no particular reason. For some it was a hand-made card. For another it was late night calls and conversation late into the night (even all night at times). Some liked to go to the movies and others to dinner. I tried to open doors and seat them first when we went somewhere.

When I was dating – I didn’t always please my dates. There were times when I was selfish. There were times I was possessive. There were times when I was jealous. These didn’t please my dates for sure. Continue reading

October 12, 2017 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Marriage, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

6 Helpful Steps to a Happier Marriage

Ephesians 5:25

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

I must admit that this is a repeat blog post. I have written about marriage many times and because I have had a very busy week with Annual Conference and other items on my schedule – I pulled this post from last year and have reworked it some to post today. I thought this post might begin some conversations in our homes and enlighten us concerning ways to help our marriages. It is targeted at men for sure but was useful the first time I used it and I bet it will be this time too.

I found an article online, by Paul Peterson. The article listed six ideas for husbands to improve their marriage.  I thought they were pretty good so I will list them and then see if our readers can come up with additional things a husband can do.  We will run a similar post for women soon (when I can find one) so keep those ideas in your head.

Here is the list I found:

#1 Date your wife every week.

Just do it. Turn off the TV, say “no” to your buddies, find a babysitter and date that lady! Date her just like you did BEFORE you married her! Continue reading

June 3, 2016 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Denomination, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Marriage, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

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