Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Loving Jesus The Most

Matthew 10:37-39

37Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves his son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; 38and anyone who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39 Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.

The summer is prime family time and it is almost over dear readers! What have we accomplished this summer? Did we have any vacation time? Are we excited that school is almost here or are we wishing for a few more weeks? Do we have anything planned with the family as the summer comes to an end?

With the fall comes the football season. I know there are some who have issues with the NFL right now – but I must confess that I am watching the Ravens in a pre-season game tonight. I hope – if you watch football – that your team (College – Pro or High School) plays well this year (our local High School team needs to have a good year this year). Sports on TV are often a family event in many homes. I know I am blessed by a wife who loves football. We often spend time together watching games.

I’m putting up a small pool for the grandchildren this weekend. I’ve invited them all over the enjoy it – maybe Sunday afternoon. I hope to get it up Friday so the water warms up some by Sunday. Continue reading

August 10, 2018 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Personal, Prayer, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

God Is Our Refuge And Strength

Psalm 46:1

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.

I do not like to work alone. I would rather have someone watch me – than to work alone. I have asked my brother and my wife numerous times to just sit and watch – just so I am not alone. I do not like to work alone.

I also like to have someone who knows what they are doing around. I am very good with computers – with cell phones – most of technology. My family calls on me to do those kinds of things. I’m good at cutting grass too (LOL). But hanging pictures – working on cars – doing plumbing – painting – etc. – I am not very good at these and other things. I have even asked a young man I know to build me some removable walls for my utility trailer – because I wouldn’t know how to go about it. Continue reading

January 31, 2018 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Marriage, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

God Is My Super Hero

Psalm 42:8

By day the Lord directs his love, at night his song is with me— a prayer to the God of my life.

I grew up reading comic books. I had many first editions and full series. I enjoyed the ones that were mild mannered people in day-to-day life but when trouble arose – they would become super heroes. One of my favorites was mild mannered Clark Kent becoming Superman. I wouldn’t miss an episode and even today try to catch the old TV show when I can. My brother was a fan of Batman!

I must admit – I don’t watch much TV these days – other than some really old shows – sports and the news (you can guess which news program I watch the most). Some of the shows I tape and try to watch are the ones about super heroes. I like the supernatural! Continue reading

November 22, 2017 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Personal, Theology, Worship | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Renew Our Strength

Isaiah 40:31

…but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength.

This is vacation season for many people. My social media feeds are filled with people heading to the mountains or to the beach or out of town to a vacation destination somewhere. Often people see vacation time as a time to renew their strength – to relax and not be controlled by the day-to-day work schedule. It often allows for more family time than a typical workweek as well. What do we do to relax? What do we do to renew our strength?

An interesting discussion might include these questions and more. What do we do to relax or t be rejuvenated? Time off from work is not always relaxing as many people say they need a vacation to recuperate from their vacation. What relaxes us? What renews our strength?

I’m relaxed when I play golf or cut my grass. These times also renew my strength to face the difficulties of the day. These are times away from the troubles and drama of the world. I also relax watching mindless TV (usually old shows with morals and values that match mine). What brings us renewed strength? Continue reading

August 1, 2017 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Wait For The Lord!

Psalm 27:14

Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.

82015 RayOK – a vacation week is upon me. I think I have planned everything – so that I will not have to think about work – all week. My sermon for October 4th is complete and the media is already in the hands of the media team. My daily devotions have already been written and are on the website ready to post everyday at 9 am. I have called or visited those who have been sick or have had surgery. I have another pastor on call – a former pastor of our church – while I’m gone. I have paid all my bills – I have money in the bank – I have everything scheduled and planned out.  I even have someone living in my home while I’m gone – taking care of the house and our dog!

I believe I have prepared for this coming week. I believe I have taken the time to put everything in order. I have a former pastor taking care of emergencies – I have mature pay people and staff looking out for the day-to-day activities – I have a strong young man prepared to cover the message in my absence. The plans have been made! Let the vacation begin! Continue reading

September 25, 2015 Posted by | Build, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Sermons, Theology | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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