Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Expressing Real Love for One Another

1 Peter 1:22

Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for each other, love one another deeply, from the heart.

Life ChangeCan any of us remember the first time we used the word love? I can’t remember the first time – because – like my grandchildren – it was probably to a relative – like my mom or dad – when I was a wee lad. I love it when my grandchildren say – I love you Pop. I tell them I love them every time I see them. I want them to know they are loved. But like I said in the sermon yesterday – actions speak louder than words – so I try to show them love as well.

Can any of us remember – in our teen or older years – the first time we used the word love? Maybe it was in reference to a singing group or singer? Something like – I love Stevie Wonder or the Beatles or Steppenwolf. Maybe it was in reference to a TV or movie star? Something like – I love Elvis Presley or John Wayne (I’ll let our younger readers have a moment to Google the above mentioned persons and groups).

Can any of us remember – in our teen or older years – the first time we used the word love? Maybe we can remember the first time we told someone we really liked that we loved them? It might have been our first encounter with the opposite sex. It may have been short lived or lasted even till today or even a lifetime. Continue reading

June 10, 2019 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Daily Prayer, Denomination, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

True Love Expressed

1 Peter 1:22

Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for each other, love one another deeply, from the heart.

Can any of us remember the first time we used the word love? I can’t remember the first time – because – like my grandchildren – it was probably to a relative – like my mom or dad – when I was a wee lad. I love it when my grandchildren say – I love you Pop. I tell them I love them every time I see them.

Can we remember – in our teen or older years – the first time we used the word love? Maybe it was in reference to a singing group or singer? Something like – I love Stevie Wonder or the Beatles or Steppenwolf. Maybe it was in reference to a TV or movie star? Something like – I love Elvis Presley or John Wayne (I’ll let our younger readers have a moment to Google the above mentioned persons and groups). Continue reading

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

The Time Is Coming

2 Timothy 4:3

For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine.

RayMcDHave you ever been warned about something that was pending – something that was going to happen in the future? I had a teacher who would often say – mark my word – and then tell us something that was going to happen – like – mark my word – this will be on the next test. It wasn’t always so – but it did make us study more.

Maybe as a parent you have said something like this or your parents did – mark my word – if you do that again you will get punished. Maybe it was like this – if you don’t stop fighting – if you make me get out of my chair – if you don’t get up now – if you don’t eat all your food – than “whatever” was going to happen. This too didn’t always happen (for some of us) but it probably – for a few times – change our behavior.

Paul gives us warning in today’s passage – 2 Timothy 4:3 – For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.
Continue reading

August 26, 2016 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Denomination, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Our Use of Social Media

Philippians 2:21

For everyone looks out for his own interests, not those of Jesus Christ.

facebook_icon112015 Ray McDonaldSocial media has connected a boat load of people in the last few years.  I have a Facebook account – a Twitter account – a Linkedin account – and a Google+ account.

I have numerous friends on Facebook (and that term is used at various levels on Facebook).  There are so many friends that we have to put them in categories like folks who went to our High School – folks who are family – folks who are from our church – folks who live in our community – folks we really don’t know – etc.  We can determine who sees our posts – no one but you (if you pick this option why are you posting on Facebook – lol) – everyone – our friends only – and we can even break some friends down into a group called acquaintances and block them from seeing what other friends see.  It can get confusing. We have a news feed where we see what our friends post.  There is a private messaging portion of Facebook as well.  You can post pictures and videos too.

twitter100x100-Black-BackgrOn Twitter we can follow some folks and some folks can follow us.  On Facebook we can leave long messages.  On Twitter we are basically limited to 140 characters per post (I say basically because some Twitter Apps or Apps connected to our Twitter account will accept more than 140 characters and let people know that there is more to read after the basic characters (YouVersion.com is a program that allows you to Tweet longer Scriptures than 140 characters for instance).  Twitter is supposed to be short thoughts and people come up with loads of shortcuts to get their message across in 140 characters.

Google+ is an app that allows a variety of options to communicate with friends.  I use it mainly to set up video hangouts with my friends (basically a video call from device to device).  You can put your friends into circles and message them in groups if you wish.  I also post my blog page on this and other formats. Continue reading

February 1, 2016 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Daily Prayer, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Fast, From the Pastor, Leadership, Lenten Thought, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Sermons, Theology | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

21-Day Prayer/Fast – Day 1

Daniel 10:2-3

2 At that time I, Daniel, mourned for three weeks. 3 I ate no choice food; no meat or wine touched my lips; and I used no lotions at all until the three weeks were over.

01032015 RayToday is the day I mentioned on Christmas Eve and this past Sunday in worship.  It is the starting point for our 21-Day Prayer/Fast.  You can join me if you’d like – whether you are from FUMC or not.  The prayer/fast is for 21 days starting today and ending on January 25th.  You can do any kind of fast.  You can do a Daniel Fast (http://www.daniel-fast.com/) – or a partial fast (fasting from something like sweets – coffee – sodas – etc.) – or an extreme food fast – doing just water and broth.  You can do any type of fast (google “types of fasts” and see what comes up). Some will fast from technology – the TV – social media – etc.  What will be your fast?

During the fast I invite you to read the 21-Day Fast reading plan on http://www.youversion.com at https://www.youversion.com/reading-plans/35-21-day-fast with me.  You can keep up on this blog page too and leave comments – whatever you chose – and share what God is saying to you.  I also invite folks from FUMC to keep up with the video lessons on http://www.rightnowmedia.com (you need a logon link from me – send me your e-mail).

So how did the year 2014 treat you?  My 2014 saw some ups and some downs – how about your 2014? I can think of no better way to begin 2015 than on my knees seeking His face while I desire His grace.  Will you join me?  Seek God’s face for yourself – your family – and your church family! Continue reading

January 5, 2015 Posted by | Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, Fast, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Theology, Vision | , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

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