Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Loving Our Neighbors

Matthew 5:43-45

43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.

112015 Ray McDonaldAt Christmas time – love is felt by many but not by all. I remember the little girl next door to us when we lived in Seat Pleasant – who didn’t seem to have anyone to love on her and how my dad would welcome her to play with us or eat a meal with us. My dad would even buy her some Christmas gifts as I remember. Dad showed love to others – his heart was as big as the whole outdoors.

Who will we show love to this Christmas? It is easy to love those who love us back. Here is today’s passage in partial context. Matthew 5:43–48 – 43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46 If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47 And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. Continue reading

December 18, 2015 Posted by | Advent Thought, Bring, Build, Christmas, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How Big Is Our God?

Psalm 46:1-3

1 God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. 2 Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, 3 though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.

112015 Ray McDonaldCan you remember the earthquake of 2011?  Where were you when it hit?  Depending on the various reports we heard on the news – it was measured somewhere between a 5.8 and 6.0 on the earthquake scale.  So where were we – what were we doing – and more important – how did it impact us?  What were our thoughts during and after the quake?

I was in my church office at the time – working on a sermon when the building started to shake.  Nothing fell – and I have lots of knick-knacks on my shelves – but the old home our offices were in shook and rumbled for sure.

Immediately the staff was outside – looking first for what had caused the building to shake.  We had road construction going on and our first thought was that one of the large trucks working near the building shook the place.  I ran back into the office and checked my computer and people were tweeting and posting on Facebook that we had just had an earthquake.  I shared the information and we stayed outside a little longer. Continue reading

December 17, 2015 Posted by | Advent Thought, Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

   

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