Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Giving Our Lives For Jesus

Matthew 10:39

Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it.

RayMcDYesterday we remembered Martin Luther King Jr. I typically attend a MLK breakfast on that day but had a church member’s funeral service in the morning and a trip to West Virginia for her internment. I did spend some time talking with folks about MLK and his legacy. I also spent some time listening to some of his speeches online. MLK literally gave his life for his cause and his movement – the civil rights movement (he was assassinated on April 4th – 1968 – for his cause).

Others have given their all for their causes. People like Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela are people who lived their causes to the brink for what they believed. People like Mother Teresa and Florence Nightingale also gave their all for their causes. I’m sure our readers could think of others as well. Continue reading

January 17, 2017 Posted by | Build, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Boasting In Christ’s Power

2 Corinthians 12:9

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

RayMcDAs I get physically older – I’m losing muscle mass. I know I don’t have to lose as much muscle mass as I am because I knew a man much older than me who looked like he was in his 30’s or 40’s! Reggie Faust worked out and built muscle – daily. I MUST get back to working out – not just playing basketball and golf.

It is not fun being weaker than I was one day not too long ago (and I was never a powerhouse for sure). My physical strength is deteriorating and I must take action to reverse that trend. Working out in the gym must become a priority once again. Playing basketball Monday morning and will either go to the gym afterward or on Tuesday morning! That is my pledge. Jeff Dibler – you can hold me to this pledge.

As much as I may rebuild some muscle over the next few months – I will never be like Arnold Schwarzenegger! Or even Jeff Dibler! But I can be stronger than I am. Continue reading

October 31, 2016 Posted by | Build, Community, Daily Devotion, Daily Prayer, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Are We Committed To God in Our Lives?

Luke 1:38

“I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May it be to me as you have said.” Then the angel left her.

Are you like me – amazed at people who are so committed to a cause?  So convinced at what God has called them to do with life? Some of us struggle to find our nitch in life – struggle to find ourselves.  In my generation some people turned to drugs – alcohol – trips out west – trying to find themselves.  Many never found themselves and some never came back to reality.  It amazes me when someone can know that they know what God has for them and becomes committed to that call.

The life of Mother Teresa is an amazing story to me – how at such a young age she was so sure what God wanted for her life.  By twelve years (12) of age she was fascinated by those who gave their life to mission work and considered that her calling.  At age eighteen (18) – when most of us were leaving High School and heading off to careers or college – Mother Teresa committed her life to work for Jesus and left home and never again saw her mother or sister (her father had died when she was eight (8) years old).

At age twenty-one (21) she took her first vows as a nun.  She served in a school for nearly twenty (20) years before feeling led to a different approach to her ministry.  In 1948 – at the age of thirty-eight (38) she began her ministry to those living in the slums of Calcutta.  She died in 1997 – still working at the age of eighty-seven (87) with many years of failing health and surgeries behind her.

I couldn’t do her life justice in such a small amount of space – but her ministry impacted so many over the nearly seventy (70) years of her work for Jesus.  Her life amazes me.

So today we read about Mary – the mother of Jesus.  By some accounts she was a very young teen – maybe fourteen (14) years of age.  Think about what we were doing or did do at fourteen (14).  At this tender age Mary was mature enough and close enough to God in her walk that she was able to accept such an impossible experience and say “I am the Lord’s servant, . . .”May it be to me as you have said” when told what would happen to her.  Let’s read the story.

Luke 1:26-38 – 26 In the sixth month, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, 27 to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. 28 The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.” 29 Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. 30 But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. 31 You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end.” 34 “How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?” 35 The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called  the Son of God. 36 Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be barren is in her sixth month. 37 For nothing is impossible with God.” 38 “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May it be to me as you have said.” Then the angel left her.

What is God calling us to do for Him?  Where in our lives are we committed to Jesus – even with a small amount of this type of commitment?  Where is calling you – me – us?  Will we respond like Mary – May it be to me as you have said.

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

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March 1, 2012 Posted by | Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, From the Pastor | , , | Leave a comment

   

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