Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Not Counting Sins

2 Corinthians 5:19

that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation.

I love the love chapter in the Bible – the one many read at weddings. Here is the portion of that chapter most often read. 1 Corinthians 13:4–8 – 4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.

Part of that reading says – it (love) keeps no record of wrongs. I remind couples – when I use this passage that forgiveness must be a part of their marriage – because we all fail and we all make mistakes. There has never been the perfect marriage or the perfect marriage partner(s).

Today’s passage speaks about God not counting our sins against us. God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. Have we ever experienced that in life – apart from our relationship with Christ? If we have – we have been blessed to experience Christ-like love. Relationships can be repaired – no matter how damaged – if we can express Christ-like love to one another. Continue reading

September 13, 2017 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Marriage, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Real Love Never Fails

1 Corinthians 13:8a

Love never fails.

RayMcDIn the last few years of my ministry – maybe even most years of my ministry – I have preached on marriage. Marriage is used in the Bible several times to express the relationship we are to have with Christ. Today I want to touch on a Scripture that is a portion of what is often read at weddings. This phrase is a portion of 1 Corinthians 13:8. They are such powerful words – Love never fails. In what is commonly called the Love Chapter – often read at weddings as I wrote earlier – we get a glimpse of God’s love. Let’s read a broader section of this chapter. 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a – 4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 8a Love never fails.

Our love – in marriage – and in our everyday life – should model God’s perfect love. Paul wrote this in the midst of a teaching about the gifts of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 12). He was writing about the awesome power of God’s gifting for the church. Before his teaching about the gifts he writes: 1 Corinthians 12:4-7 – 4 There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. 6 There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men. 7 Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. Continue reading

February 28, 2017 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Marriage, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

God Can See Us!

Genesis 16:13

She gave this name to the Lord who spoke to her: “You are the God who sees me,” for she said, “I have now seen the One who sees me.”

RayMcDAnyone reading this blog post old enough to remember the TV show Romper Room? It started airing a couple of years before I was born and was franchised (rather than syndicated) – which means local stars were used wherever the show aired. It began in Baltimore and local talent worked the show.

What I remember most about this show was the Magic Mirror – through which the host could see the many children who were watching. Children were encouraged (parents of course) to mail in first names and the host would say I see Billy – I see Mary – I see Sally – etc. during the show to signify the children watching. I really thought she could see right through her mirror and into my home and I waited to hear my name. Continue reading

August 29, 2016 Posted by | Build, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Marriage and God’s Perfect Love

1 Corinthians 13:8a

Love never fails.

112015 Ray McDonaldIn the last few years I have preached on marriage a number of times.  Marriage is used in the Bible several times to express the relationship we are to have with Christ.  Today I want to touch on a Scripture that is a portion of what is often read at weddings.  This phrase is a portion of 1 Corinthians 13:8.  They are such powerful words.  Love never fails.  In what is commonly called the Love Chapter – often read at weddings as I wrote earlier – we get a glimpse of God’s love.  Let’s read a broader section of this chapter.  1 Corinthians 13:4-8a – 4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 8a Love never fails.

Our love – in marriage – and in our everyday life – should model God’s perfect love. Paul wrote this in the midst of a teaching about the gifts of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 12).  He was writing about the awesome power of God’s gifting for the church.  Before his teaching about the gifts he writes: 1 Corinthians 12:4-7 – 4 There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. 6 There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men. 7 Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. Continue reading

February 24, 2016 Posted by | Build, Community, Daily Devotion, Daily Prayer, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, Fast, From the Pastor, Holy Spirit, Leadership, Lenten Thought, Marriage, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Sermons, Theology, Worship | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

   

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