Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Following Christ’s Example

Luke 2:52

And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.

Many of us are familiar with the story of Jesus at twelve – as He was amazing the teachers in the temple courts with questions and answers. Joseph and Mary couldn’t find Jesus among the relatives in the caravan – so they headed back to Jerusalem to find Him. Luke 2:46–47 – 46 After three days they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. 47 Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers.

Recently in a Bible study we talked about the divinity and humanity of Jesus. Depending on how you understand that dynamic will reveal where you fall in our ability to follow Christ’s example. For instance – if you believe He was fully divine and only appeared as human – you would have a hard time believing you could follow God’s example. If you believe that He was human on earth and didn’t access His divine power – you would have an easier task of seeing Jesus as an example for us to follow. Continue reading

October 6, 2017 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Daily Prayer, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Personal, Prayer, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

All Things Work For The Good

Romans 8:28

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

20140530-104833-38913743.jpgIt is the time of the year when people are graduating from school. Some are moving from High School to College – some from High School to the work force – and some from college to the work force. It is also the time of year for weddings – I think June has traditionally been the most popular month for weddings.

In each of these scenarios and more – the hope is always that all things would work for the good. We’re hoping the decisions we have made and training or education we have received – will work for the good! I have yet to see a coupe walking down the aisle that wasn’t full of a measure of hope that all things will work for the good. Continue reading

June 6, 2014 Posted by | Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Personal, Prayer, Theology | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Let Your Light Shine

Luke 8:16

No one after lighting a lamp covers it with a jar or puts it under a bed, but puts it on a stand, so that those who enter may see the light.

profileYesterday in worship we talked about bad news and good news in the Bible.  We talked about Ruth – Joseph – Jonah – and Peter.  Each of them had some tough spots in their lives.  Ruth was a young widow without hope – Joseph was beaten and thrown into a pit to die by his brother and later sold into slavery – Jonah ran from God – was thrown into the sea and swallowed by a large fish – and Peter was beaten – chained and left in prison with four legions of guards watching his every move.  Sounds like a lot of bad news to me.

In each case God gave them some good news.  Boaz became Ruth’s kinsman redeemer – a foretaste of Christ being our kinsman redeemer (and Boaz and Ruth became ancestors of Christ).  Joseph saved Israel from starvation during a famine after God blessed him to become high up in the government in Egypt.  Jonah was saved from the belly of the large fish (a REAL story by the way) – spit upon a beach – went to Nineveh – preached about God and the while city repented.  Peter walked out of the prison – led by an angel – past guards – through gates that opened for him.  Sounds like some good news to me. Continue reading

February 10, 2014 Posted by | Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Marriage, Outreach, Personal, Sermons, Theology | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

May God’s Will Be Done

Mark 14:36

“Abba, Father,” he said, “everything is possible for you. Take this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.”

profileWe saw in a message during Advent how Joseph and Mary yielded their will – their plans – to God’s plans during the Christmas story.  Joseph was to take his wife Mary home to begin their lives together – only to find out that she was with child.  An angel spoke with him and instead of divorcing Mary – he changed his plan – his will – to take her as his wife.  Mary planned to move in with Joseph – I would imagine – and they both probably dreamed of having children when the time was right and live happily ever after!  Isn’t that what little boys and girls grow up wanting?  Yet Mary was visited by an angel and the angel revealed to her that she – a virgin – was with child and they would call him Jesus! Continue reading

December 30, 2013 Posted by | Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor | , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

And The Parents Marvel!

Luke 2:33

The child’s father and mother marveled at what was said about him.

profileChristmas is often about children.  As a matter of fact – much of the life of a parent is about the children.  Some of my fondest memories are about events in the life of my children – our three daughters.  Things like one daughter organizing her playground in elementary school – so that the students (her classmates) would move from apparatus to apparatus in an orderly fashion at her instruction.  Things like one daughter needing to find words she couldn’t spell (and neither could her parents) for her weekly test because she already knew the words for her class that week (every week).  Things like one daughter who didn’t seem to have interest in school becoming a straight A-student through college and grad school. Continue reading

December 19, 2013 Posted by | Advent Thought, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

   

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