Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

How’s Our Prayer Life

Psalm 27:4

One thing I ask from the Lord…

Life ChangeThe Special General Conference (SGC) begins tomorrow. They are meeting in St. Louis – and delegates from all over the world will be there – representing the United Methodist Church. We are a global denomination with over 12 million members. The Methodist movement has approximately 80 million worldwide in various denominations that have their roots in the Wesleyan movement of Christianity.

At the SGC – there will be 864 delegates – with 58 percent from the United States and 30 percent from Africa. The remaining delegates are from the Philippines – Europe – and Eurasia – as well as from churches with which The United Methodist Church has formal relationships.

If we could ask for one thing of God – what would it be? Would we ask for unity in the denomination? Would we ask for a peaceful split? I know my prayer has been for us to be open to the Holy Spirit. I have prayed for unity – but not at the cost of doctrinal integrity. I have prayed for the church to understand clearly the Word of God and to rightly determine its use in our lives. What would we ask for if we could ask for one thing of God?

Let me ask another question. How’s our prayer life? Prayer is how we speak with God. How’s our prayer life? Continue reading

February 22, 2019 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Daily Prayer, Denomination, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

One Thing I Ask

Psalm 27:4

One thing I ask from the Lord…

Ray 2018If you could ask for one thing of God – what would it be? World peace would be a popular request I believe. Some might ask for wealth – or health – or a loved one to return to life. Some might ask for a life partner or for children. What would you ask for if you could ask for one thing of God?

Let me ask another question. How’s your prayer life? Prayer is how we speak with God. How’s your prayer life?

When we pray – do you do the normal now I lay me down to sleep and thank you for this food along with some short prayers at church? Does that sum up your prayer life? I sure hope not. How do you approach God? How’s your prayer life? Would you like to improve your prayer life? Continue reading

September 13, 2018 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Daily Prayer, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Holy Spirit, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Questions, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

21-Day Prayer/Fast – Day 16

Psalm 27:4

One thing I ask of the Lord, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.

01032015 RayDuring our 21-Day Prayer/Fast – I hope we have spent more time seeking God rather than merely seeking what God can do for us.  We probably all know what it feels like to find out that someone was our friend or at least presented themselves to be our friend simply to find out they were merely out for something.  My prayer is that we have been seeking His face more than merely desiring His grace.  Even though we often say – seeking His face while desiring His grace – my prayer is that we are seeking God’s face first and foremost during our 21-Day Prayer/Fast.  Being in God’s presence is what our heart should desire.

The Psalmist begins today’s reading by describing the power and awesomeness of God – Psalm 27:1-3 – 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?  2 When evil men advance against me to devour my flesh, when my enemies and my foes attack me, they will stumble and fall.  3 Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then will I be confident.  What comes next is what I feel we should be striving for during the prayer fast.  Psalm 27:4 – One thing I ask of the Lord, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple. Continue reading

January 20, 2015 Posted by | Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Daily Prayer, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, Fast, From the Pastor, Holy Spirit, Leadership, Personal, Prayer, Theology, Vision | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How’s Your Prayer Life?

Psalm 27:4

One thing I ask from the Lord…

profileHow’s your prayer life? Do you do the normal now I lay me down to sleep and thank you for this food along with some short prayers at church? Does that sum up your prayer life? I sure hope not.

How’s your prayer life? Have you ever invested time into your prayer life? Do you journal your prayer life? Are you on a first-name basis with God in your prayer life? Do you believe God hears your prayers? How do you pray? What is your practice?

I know – a lot of questions – how about some answers! Prayer is an essential part of our walk with Jesus. Building a deep prayer life is essential to building a deep relationship with Jesus. Continue reading

May 6, 2014 Posted by | Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Fast, From the Pastor, Holy Spirit, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Theology | , , , , | Leave a comment

Gaze Upon the Face of God – Day 16 of 21 Prayer/Fast

Psalm 27:4

One thing I ask of the Lord, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.

RayBlogDuring our Prayer/Fast – I hope we have spent more time seeking God rather than merely seeking what God can do for us.  We probably all know what it feels like to find out that someone was our friend or at least presented them self to be our friend simply to find out they were merely out for something.  My prayer is that we have been seeking His face more than merely desiring His grace.  Even though we often say – seeking His face while desiring His grace – my prayer is that we are seeking God’s face first and foremost during our prayer/fast.  Being in God’s presence is what our heart should desire.

The Psalmist begins today’s reading by describing the power and awesomeness of God – Psalm 27:1-3 – 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?  2 When evil men advance against me to devour my flesh, when my enemies and my foes attack me, they will stumble and fall.  3 Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then will I be confident.  What comes next is what I feel we should be striving for during the prayer fast.  Psalm 27:4 – One thing I ask of the Lord, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.

Gazing upon God’s face is where it’s at my friends and readers.  Have you ever felt that mountain top experience where you have felt the presence of God?  A place or time where you knew you were in His presence?  Maybe it was after a great spiritual event like a revival or a Promise Keeper’s event or a Catalyst Conference.  Maybe it has been during this prayer/fast.  Whenever or wherever it happens for you – past or future – I know you won’t forget it.  For me one of those experiences was being on the Mall in DC during the Stand in the Gap Promise Keeper’s event October 4, 1997.  Well over a million men gathered to stand in the gap for our nation.  Kneeling before God in silent prayer with so many men seeking the face of God was a very moving moment.  It was an experience I will never forget.

The Psalmist reminds us later in the Psalm to seek God’s face – Psalm 27:8 – My heart says of you, “Seek his face!” Your face, Lord, I will seek. My prayer for us all is that we will gaze upon the face of God – here and now – and in eternity yet to come!

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

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January 16, 2013 Posted by | Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Fast | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

   

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