Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Are We Weary and Burdened?

Matthew 11:28

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.

112015 Ray McDonaldWhen my oldest granddaughter was four-months-old – she entered a stage where she fought sleep (I’m at the age where I love taking a nap and going to bed at night).  She was the best baby I have ever known (all of my grandchildren are for sure).  She didn’t fuss about much of anything – yet she began to fight going to sleep.  I remember babysitting with her and having a hard time getting her to go down for bedtime.

I remember when I was a child my mom would force me to rest – to take an afternoon nap – after hours of playing and lunch.  I’m not sure it was for my good or hers – lol.  But if I laid on my bed long enough – usually about five minutes – I would be sound asleep.  Even today – if I sit still for five minutes I can doze off.  If I’m not in motion – I will become very docile.  I find myself falling asleep most anywhere.

The body needs rest.  I remember my college and seminary days – sleep was something that I did when I really needed it – or I crashed – because there was so much to do and so little time.  Late night study sessions – mainly because I didn’t keep up in my readings like I should – were commonplace.  All-nighters were just the way I rolled back then.  Up until about a two years ago – 4-6 hours of sleep was all I needed – with a 15-20 minute nap mid-day.  At 61 I am starting to need a little more rest to recoup from the day!  Now I find myself needing 7-8 hours a night – still with the 15-20 minute nap during the day. Continue reading

Advertisements

March 21, 2016 Posted by | Bring, Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, From the Pastor, Holy Spirit, Leadership, Lenten Thought, Marriage, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Theology, Worship | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Fear Not

Psalm 118:6

The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?

profileToday’s devotional thought was delayed – it somehow didn’t go out like it should – so I moved it to tomorrow and will do a new one for today.  It will be short and sweet.

I remember the first time I was on fast running water.  My new wife and I went white water rafting in Pennsylvania – on the Lower Youghiogheny River I believe.  It was amazing – but a little scary for a land lover.  We didn’t turn over – but some of the rafts in our group did and I will say before you worry – they all made it safely back to the raft.

We came upon a still water area and so we all got in line to jump off this big rock into a deep part of the river.  I will tell you now – I had jumped off high things before – into water – I wasn’t scared at all.  That is until I hit the water – it was freezing – the water – coming down off the mountain from the melted snow.  I lost my breath for a moment – and was scared – fear gripped me and I thought – will I ever come up and catch my breath? Continue reading

August 27, 2013 Posted by | Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

God Restores Our Soul

Psalm 23:3, Matthew 11:29

He restores my soul

And you will find rest for your souls

RevRayRESTOne time I asked a group of people if any one present had life all figured out – and no one raised their hand.  I led a funeral where I confessed to not having full understanding and not having the answers to all of life’s questions (no one was surprised).  I shared with several families over the last month or so that life at times is difficult and hard.  I believe we all have rough and tough times in our lives.  We all need rest!  I know I do and I know of friends that need rest as well!

I like Psalm 23 – and how the Psalmist finds restoration for his soul in a relationship with God.  It is through our deepening relationship with Jesus – with God – that we can find rest.  Let’s read one of today’s passages in context.  Psalms 23:1-6 – 1 The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, 3 he restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. 4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. 6 Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.  The Psalmist – David – knows that it is his shepherd that restores his soul! Continue reading

April 30, 2013 Posted by | Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, From the Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Finding True Rest

Matthew 11:28

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.

RevRayMy four-month-old granddaughter is just starting to enter a stage where she is fighting sleep.  She is the best baby I have ever known – doesn’t fuss about much of anything – yet she is beginning to fight going to sleep.

I remember when I was a child my mom would force me to rest – to take an afternoon nap – after hours of playing and lunch.  I’m not sure it was for my good or hers – lol.  But if I laid on my bed long enough – usually about five minutes – I would be sound asleep.  Even today – if I sit still for five minutes I can doze off.  If I’m not in motion – I will become very docile.

The body needs rest.  I remember my college and seminary days – sleep was something that I did when I really needed it – or I crashed – because there was so much to do and so little time.  Late night study sessions – mainly because I didn’t keep up in my readings like I should – were commonplace.  All-nighters were just the way I rolled back then.  Up until about a year ago – 4-6 hours of sleep was all I needed – with a 15-20 minute nap mid-day.  At 58 I am starting to need a little more rest to recoup from the day!

Continue reading

March 25, 2013 Posted by | Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, From the Pastor, Leadership, Lenten Thought | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Come to Jesus – He Will Give You Rest

Matthew 11:28

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”

I recently asked a group of people if any one present had life all figured out – and no one raised their hand.  We recently led a funeral where we confessed to not having full understanding and not having the answers to all of life’s questions.  I shared with several families over the last month or so that life at times is difficult and hard.  I believe we all have rough and tough times in our lives.  We all need rest!

I like Psalm 23 – and how the Psalmist finds restoration for his soul in a relationship with God.  Psalms 23:1-6 – 1 The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, 3 he restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. 4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. 6 Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

Jesus wants to be there for us folks.  I mean it – Jesus really wants to be there for us to restore our souls.  Read the verses around today’s passage.  Matthew 11:28-30 – 28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Jesus wants to give us rest – wants to restore our souls – wants to lift our burdens and help carry our load.  That is such good news to me every day – because life can be hard!

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

Tweet this Blog Post

May 10, 2012 Posted by | Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey | , , , | Leave a comment

   

%d bloggers like this: