Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

I Am Confident Of This

Psalm 27:13-14

I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.

112015 Ray McDonaldThis Psalm starts off with very familiar words: Psalms 27:1 – The Lord is my light and my salvation — whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life — of whom shall I be afraid?

One of the things that Christians have going for them – is a belief in life after death – and in eternal life in Christ.  It isn’t that we don’t enjoy this life – at times we really enjoy it – at times we could take it or leave it – but there is something better to come.  That is our hope – that is our faith.

Having this hope – this faith – allows us to face life differently than others.  Our belief in eternity – in God – allows us to look beyond the momentary troubles and look at a larger goal.  As a Christian we can say: If God is for us, who can be against us? Romans 8:31b Continue reading

February 3, 2016 Posted by | Build, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Do We Have Anxiety?

1 Peter 5:7

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

82015 RayWhat are we anxious about today in our lives?  Are we anxious about a child’s medical concerns or our own medical concerns?  Are we anxious about our job or our finances?  Are we anxious about the days as they unfold before us? Remember Jesus’ teachings on this subject – Matthew 6:34 – Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

From time to time we talk about dark places in our lives – and how life doesn’t always work out the way we planned.  We’ve talked about our hope not being based on temporal things but on the eternal (not the short part of the rope but the long end).  Our hopes are based on the eternal life found in Christ.  He didn’t remain in the grave but rose and He also ascended to the right hand of the Father. Continue reading

November 5, 2015 Posted by | Build, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, From the Pastor, Leadership, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Keeping Our Eyes on Jesus

Psalm 27:13-14

13 I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. 14 Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.

RevRayThis Psalm starts off with very familiar words – words we have all heard before.  Psalms 27:1 – The Lord is my light and my salvation — whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life — of whom shall I be afraid?

One of the things that Christians have going for them – and it doesn’t seem to mater what is going on around us – is a belief in life after death – and in eternal life in Christ.  It isn’t that we don’t enjoy this life – at times we really enjoy it – at times we could take it or leave it – but there is something better to come.  Something that far out weighs what we are facing in the here and now.

Having this hope – this faith – allows us to face life differently than non-Christians (many times).  Our belief in eternity – in God – allows us to look beyond the momentary troubles and look at a larger goal.  As a Christian we can say: If God is for us, who can be against us? Romans 8:31b Continue reading

July 11, 2013 Posted by | Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Caste Your Anxious Moments on Jesus

1 Peter 5:7

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

What are you anxious about today in your life?  Are you anxious about a child’s medical concerns or your own concerns?  Are you anxious about your job or your finances?  Are you anxious about the days as they unfold before you?  Remember Jesus’ teachings on this subject – Matthew 6:34 – Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Sunday we talked about dark places in our lives – and how life doesn’t always work out the way we planned.  We talked about our hope not being based on temporal things but on the eternal.  They are based on the eternal life found in Christ as He didn’t remain in the grave but rose and he also ascended to the right hand of the Father.

The Psalmist – who was going through some dark moments in his life – wrote these words in the midst of one of his Psalms. Psalms 27:13-14 – 13 I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.  14 Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.

Currently I know people who are facing life threatening circumstances.  I know people who have lost their jobs and have little hope of meeting their current bills.  I know of people who are making life changes to their careers – and more.  All of these and more are major events in a person’s life.  What’s going on in your life?

In the midst of Peter’s first letter – first Epistle – he includes today’s passage – Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.  What a great word for us today.  Here it is in context – as Peter gives instructions to those who lead the church: 1 Peter 5:1-10 – 1 To the elders among you, I appeal as a fellow elder, a witness of Christ’s sufferings and one who also will share in the glory to be revealed: 2 Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, serving as overseers — not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not greedy for money, but eager to serve; 3 not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock. 4 And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away. 5 Young men, in the same way be submissive to those who are older. All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”  6 Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. 7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. 8 Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 9 Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings. 10 And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.

Whatever brings you anxiousness or worry today – caste it on Jesus who promises to help carry our load – giving us His yoke – which is easy.

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.”

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

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November 9, 2011 Posted by | Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey | , , , , | Leave a comment

Keeping Our Eyes on God Rather than the Momentary Troubles

Psalm 27:13-14

13 I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. 14 Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.

This Psalm starts off with very familiar words:

Psalms 27:1 – The Lord is my light and my salvation — whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life — of whom shall I be afraid?

One of the things that Christians have going for them – is a belief in life after death – and in eternal life in Christ.  It isn’t that we don’t enjoy this life – at times we really enjoy it – at times we could take it or leave it – but there is something better to come.

Having this hope – this faith – allows us to face life differently than others.  Our belief in eternity – in God – allows us to look beyond the momentary troubles and look at a larger goal.  As a Christian we can say: If God is for us, who can be against us? Romans 8:31b

I spoke with a friend today that is facing some struggles now.  I tried to encourage this person to look beyond the momentary troubles and to remember that soon and very soon this world which is unfair will pass and we will live before a righteous God.  I reminded them to fight the good fight – while life remains – but to keep their eye on a higher goal.

I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.

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

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March 29, 2011 Posted by | Daily Devotion, Encouragement, Faith Journey | , | Leave a comment

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