Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Our Labor in the Lord

1 Corinthians 15:58

Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.

IMG_0301Have you ever wrestled with an idea – wrestled with a theology? The church – the Body of Christ – has wrestled with several things over the years. One of those theological areas that people wrestle is between works and grace.

On one hand we have passages about grace. Grace is unmerited favor. Grace is a free gift from God to His people. Grace is available to all – all who turn their hearts toward Jesus – confess their sins and receive His Lordship. What follows are a few scriptures about grace.

Ephesians 2:8–9 – 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—9 not by works, so that no one can boast. Continue reading

February 5, 2015 Posted by | Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Daily Prayer, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Living in Christ is Living a Life of Love!

1 Timothy 1:5

The goal of this command is love, which comes from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.

A lot has been said of late about attitude!  We’re told in Scripture that our attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Philippians 2:5.  I’ve often reminded us that Christianity boils down to attitudethe position and condition of our heart.  Paul reminds us that the greatest gift is love: now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love 1 Corinthians 13:13.

When we’re young we often think about love as a feeling.  Love is not an emotion or a feeling – love is an action – a purposeful action of the heart.  It is a decision – an active decision.  There is a misnomer that we can fall in love.  We can fall into infatuation or desire – but love is a conscious decision.  Love is the commitment of the heart.

Just a side note – we cannot fall out of love either – we purposefully decide to not build on our relationship with our partner or with another person.  We fail to build on our decision to love.

Love comes from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.  We decide to follow after Jesus or fill our time with the things of the world.  We’re told – if we want to know God’s will for our lives – we should put more of God into our lives and less of the world.  Here is how Paul wrote it: Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is — his good, pleasing and perfect will. Romans 12:2

Today I encourage us to continue to make a daily decision to follow after Jesus – to love Jesus more and more!  Walking out or working out our salvation is a moment by moment decision making process: Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed — not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence — continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, Philippians 2:12.

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

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May 11, 2012 Posted by | Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey | , , , , | Leave a comment

   

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