Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

What Is On The Inside?

2 Corinthians 4:7

But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.

I loved Twinkies when I was a kid. The marshmallow center was always a treat. I didn’t know at the time how bad they were for me – all I knew was that they were sweet and good to the taste. I could eat several in a setting.

Most of us have probably heard the phrase – beauty is only skin deep – meaning the outer shell can be pretty but if the inner self is not – the outer shell is all you get. Outer beauty fades – fast! It is the inner beauty that will last. If you married a person that is beautiful inside and out you really have something – but if you had to choose one – go for the inside! Continue reading

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January 12, 2018 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Marriage, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Witnessing Our Faith

1 Timothy 4:12

Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity.

Today I wanted to write about setting an witnessing our faith. Witnessing our faith is not about the words we say but the life we live. Actions often speak louder than words – you’ve heard that before – right?

Timothy was a young pastor – a product of Paul’s ministry. Paul was writing to him and those Timothy was leading to give him encouragement and teaching. Part of what Paul wrote we are using as our base passage in this morning’s devotional.

As Paul was telling Timothy to not let anyone look down on you because you are young – he also encouraged him to be a good witness. Think about these words for a moment this morning – set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity. How do these words speak to us this morning? Continue reading

September 7, 2017 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Daily Prayer, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, From the Pastor, Leadership, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Let The Rain Fall

Isaiah 55:10-11

10 As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, 11 so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.

IMG_0301Rain falls at different rates. The other evening we had a storm at home. The rain came down so hard the ground couldn’t absorb it all – there was a river running down the side yard. Another time last week it merely sprinkled – barely got the ground wet/damp. We’ve also gotten some significant snow falls the last few winters – as the snow mounted and slowly melted into the ground. No matter how fast or light the rain/snow falls – rain is good for the ground – the crops – the flowers – the grass – our wells.  As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater.

Of course – at times there is much too much rain – just ask folks in Texas this week.  Rivers are overflowing and towns have been put underwater.  At times -on the other hand – when there is very little rain – you will hear reports about how far under normal we are in the rain fall. We will hear that water supplies are low and how much we need the rain.  When we have drought conditions – we asked to preserve our use of water. Continue reading

June 18, 2015 Posted by | Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Daily Prayer, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Marriage, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Theology | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Come, Follow Me

Matthew 4:19

“Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.”

20140530-104833-38913743.jpgJesus went around calling His Disciples. He called them from the routine – everyday – work they were doing – to the extraordinary – spiritual work of following Him.

Today’s passage gives us an example of His calling on His Disciples. “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.”

Have we answered the call by Jesus to come and follow Him? Are we His disciples? Do we follow Jesus? If we heard the call – how did we respond? Are we still responding today? Have we given Him our all? Are we still struggling with the call? Continue reading

November 13, 2014 Posted by | Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , | Leave a comment

Shine Like Stars in the Sky!

Philippians 2:15-16

15 Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky 16 as you hold firmly to the word of life.

20140530-104833-38913743.jpgHave you ever looked out into the night sky and watched the stars? If you live in an urban area – this might be a little hard – but if you live in a rural area like I do – it is a sight to behold. The stars shine brightly in the clear night sky. I use to love sitting on the roof top of a home we use to live in – watching the sky (my room have a window that opened onto the roof and I slipped out there some nights – my parents didn’t know – I think).

Let’s look at today’s passage in partial context. Philippians 2:12–18 – 12 Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. 14 Do everything without grumbling or arguing, 15 so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.”  Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky 16 as you hold firmly to the word of life. And then I will be able to boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor in vain. 17 But even if I am being poured out like a drink offering on the sacrifice and service coming from your faith, I am glad and rejoice with all of you. 18 So you too should be glad and rejoice with me. Continue reading

November 11, 2014 Posted by | Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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