Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Perseverance Leads to Lacking Nothing!

James 1:4

Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

fullsizeoutput_ffeI’m sitting here – in my church office – trying to find my focus! I’m praying and reading the Bible – I’m listening to some Contemporary Christian music – feeding my spirit (after a lunch of salad – grilled chicken and water to feed the body).

As I was reading in the Bible I opened to a favorite book – the Book of James – Christ’s brother’s book. I came across that famous passage at the beginning of that book.

James 1:2-4 – 2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. 4 Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. Continue reading

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October 19, 2018 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

To Not Lack Anything!

James 1:4

Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

IMG_0301I’m sitting here – in my home office – trying to find my focus! I’m praying and reading the Bible – I’m listening to some Gospel music – feeding my spirit (after a breakfast of lean hamburger and water to feed the body).

As I was reading I opened to a favorite book – the Book of James – Christ’s brother’s book. I came across that famous passage at the beginning of that book.

James 1:2-4 – 2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. 4 Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. Continue reading

June 8, 2015 Posted by | Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Marriage, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Theology | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

21-Day Prayer/Fast – Day 11

James 1:2-4

2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. 4 Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

01032015 RayAnother day and another difficulty – seems like that sometimes – right?  Have you ever felt that way in your life’s journey?  Have you ever felt if things could go wrong they would?  Or have you ever felt if it wasn’t for bad luck I’d have no luck at all?  Trials and difficulties just seem to come with the reality that we are human and things will be tough in certain seasons of life.  Can I get an Amen?

I have written on my blog page in the past that the last few years have been rough for me and my family – with the sickness and death of my father in late 2012 – with the loss of an adoptive granddaughter that was in our arms until the birth mom changed her mind – with the near death accident I had with a tractor-trailer that same year – and with other personal and professional happenings.  Part of the prayer/fast for me in 2013 was to dig deeper into my relationship with Jesus – and that is my purpose again in 2015.  I hope that is the point of your prayer/fast as well.

Continue reading

January 15, 2015 Posted by | Community, Daily Devotion, Daily Prayer, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Family, Fast, From the Pastor, Holy Spirit, Leadership, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Consider It Pure Joy – Day 11 of 21 Prayer/Fast

James 1:2-4

2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. 4 Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

ramonblogAnother day and another difficulty!  Have you ever felt that way in your life’s journey?  Have you ever felt if things could go wrong they would?  Or have you ever felt if it wasn’t for bad luck I’d have no luck at all?  Trials and difficulties just seem to come with the reality that we are human and things will be tough in certain seasons of life.

I’ve written that 2012 was a rough year for me and my family – with the sickness and death of my father – with the loss of an adoptive granddaughter that was in our arms until the birth mom changed her mind – with the near death accident I had with a tractor-trailer – and with other personal and professional happenings.  Part of the prayer/fast for me was to dig deeper into my relationship with Jesus.  I hope that was a point for your prayer/fast as well.

21-day-fastToday’s passage speaks to facing hard times.  You can read the whole of James 1 here.  The verses I’ve used for today – are tough to stomach at times – especially when you are on this side of troubled times.  It makes more sense when you are on the other side of difficult times – hindsight is always easier to take!

Let’s read today’s portion of James 1 again.  Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

Are you facing any trials during or before you started the prayer/fast?  You already know that I was facing some.  As we seek His face and desire His grace – my prayer is that we will grow in perseverance and allow God’s work to be finished in us – season upon season – and lack nothing as we serve our Lord.

It is hard to consider it joy to face a trail – but – our God is Sovereign and will see us through it all!  God has seen me through rough times in the past and I have faith God will see me/us through whatever we are facing today.  Keeping our eyes focused on Jesus is the answer – just ask Peter!

Just something to think about today as you go on your way.

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January 11, 2013 Posted by | Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Fast | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

God is Funny That Way – by Chris Ditch

Today’s devotional was written by one of my sons – Chris Ditch.  You can read it here or on his blog page – http://thedisnitch.wordpress.com/.  Anything I would have written today would have been much less moving!  The picture is of my grandson – Mason Ditch.  His mother Crystal and father Chris are like our own children so we claim Mason as our own as well.  Read what his father has written and lift this family in your prayers please. Mason has Tuberous Sclerosis (look it up).

Over the last few days I’ve had a lot of time to reflect on things and one thing that has popped up multiple times is how I have always been drawn to the book of James in the Bible.  I can remember the exact time and place that I first read it and I remember liking it so much that I read the whole book in one sitting.  That was over 10 years ago and since then I have taught a few lessons to the kids in the youth group at church based on the teachings in that book.  Taking it straight from the book itself it starts out with:

2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

At the point in my life when I first read that I can honestly say I had never had anything major happen to me that I had to persevere through, but it still resonated with me, I just didn’t know why, until now.  God is funny that way I guess…  I’ve read this book countless times in the last 10 years and I never get tired of reading it, and I can definitely say that having these words stored away in my brain has helped immensely with all that we have gone through with Mason.  When I’ve read this in the past I always thought that I would have to persevere through something that happened to me directly, whether it be injury or sickness, I never thought it would be my son.  I know that through perseverance I will be a better man, a better father, a better husband, and a better christian, and I think that is what God wants.  No matter how bad things seem when you’re going through them, there is always something positive that you can take from them, sometimes it just takes time for it to be revealed to you.  I know in my heart God has great things planned for my son and in a very short period of time he has reached the hearts of so many and I don’t see that stopping any time soon.  In the mean time Crystal and I will persevere through whatever trials we face leaning on God for the strength that only He can provide for us and trusting in His will for our son!

Something to think about today as you go on your way.

P.S. here is another post by Chris – with more detail: http://thedisnitch.wordpress.com/2011/12/22/a-bump-in-the-road/

 

December 22, 2011 Posted by | Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey | , | 1 Comment

   

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