Tag Archives: Faith

Thanksgiving (An Attitude of the heart!!)

This should have been posted before Thanksgiving Day.  All the same,

“Better Late than never,” and on thanksgiving week,

I heard one radio announcer say:

“Thanksgiving is not a day, it is an attitude of the heart.”

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  • T – THANK and PRAISE God

    • for all things BIG and SMALL!
      • And do not forget
        • the precious people in your life!
  • H – HEALTH AND LIFE

    • are things we can all be thankful for
      • even if we are ill at a hospital
        • or in bed!
  • A – APPRECIATE and ADMIRE

    • the beauty of God’s creation around you.
  • N – NAME and NUMBER

    • your blessings,
      • its a rewarding experience,
      • including the precious people in your life.
  • K – KINDNESS and THANKSGIVING

    • in the heart
      • are twin siblings in the same home.
  • S – A SMILE and a CHEER;

    • want to see it on the face of the deserving?
      • Just say, “Thank You!”
        • from the heart
        • and with a warm smile!
  • G – GIVING and RECEIVING:

    • The one exists not without the other
      • every time you say,
        • “Thank You!”
  • I – ICTUS;

    • Five Greek letters for ‘fish‘:
    • Jesus, Christ, God, Son, Savior:
      • at least one reason to “give thanks!”
  • V – VISION and VALUE:

    • Nothing says:
      • I see and I value what you have done” like when you say
        • “Thank you very much,”
          • from the heart.
  • I – INSIDE and OUTSIDE:

    • A thankful heart, expressed outwardly in sincere words
      • belong together.
  • N – NICE and NEW: 

    • Thanksgiving is always that
      • and much more.
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  • G – GOOD to GREAT: 

    • ‘Good Gifts’ become ‘GREAT GIFTS,’
      • when it is received with a heartfelt:
        • “Thank you.”

 

 

 

 

I believe in Miracles and …!

I believe in a reality

  • that is governed by observable and verifiable laws
    • of science operating within God’s creation.
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I believe that scientific laws and discoveries are valid

  • for ALL human existence
    • including those of the children of God(!), that is, the laws of
      • gravitation, motion, thermodynamics, relativity, atomic energy,
      • mathematics, statistics, chemistry, physics, electromagnetism, etc.
      • I do not accept evolution BY CHANCE but
        • I cannot rule out evolution by divine design.
  • Denying the laws and verifiable discoveries of science
    • on the basis of so-called ‘faith’
    • is a futile endeavor because
      • GOD PUT THEM THERE!!!
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I believe and accept the scientific advances behind modern technology

  • that have revolutionized human existence in the fields of
    • agriculture and food production,
    • medicine and fighting disease and illnesses,
    • manufacturing,
    • communication and transportation,
    • entertainment,
    • astronomy and even (sadly and unfortunately)
    • warfare, because
  • GOD PUT THEM THERE (!!!)
    • to be discovered for human use!

I also believe and accept verifiable theories and observations of the social sciences

  • concerning human nature and human interactions:
    • the quest for power,
      • how and why people attain, keep and exercise
        • dominance over others,
      • organizational behavior,
      • group dynamics;
    • the quest for possessions including
      • the universal principle of scarcity,
        • (human desires and wants are unlimited but resources are),
      • the economics laws of demand and supply,
    • the quest for pleasure,
    • Maslow’s hierarchy of human needs, etc.
    •  are valid because GOD PUT THEM THERE!!!!

I  believe that God is therefore the greatest scientist;

  • the greatest, physicist, mathematician, astronomer,
  • molecular biologist, surgeon, sociologist, etc.!
  • God is above, over, and beyond all of his creation.

I also believe in the writings of the Bible

  • It is a revelation of an otherwise UNKNOWABLE God.
    • How else can we know the God
      • who is the origin, and is over, above,  and beyond the cosmos?
    • This revelation gives meaning and purpose to life.
    • It is ultimately the only viable answer
      • to the question:
        • “What is the meaning and purpose of life?”
    • Think of God as the Unlimited Energy that birthed everything
      • (energy appears to be one of the main constants in the entire cosmos)
      • but which/who is also a PERSONAL being!
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I believe God wants men to live within the natural order of creation

  • FOR THE MOST PART(!!),
    • that miracles of the dramatic kind
      • are rare occurrences and
        • designed by God to be so(!),
        • because he wants us to live by faith(!!)
        • and because he wants us to live
          • within the scientific (natural) laws of his creation!
    • GOD PUT THEM THERE!!!!
  • Neither Abraham, nor Jacob, Joseph, Moses, David, Solomon, Paul, Peter, or James
    • discovered the aerodynamics in order to build an airplane, nor did they
    • discover penicillin, the microscope, electricity, the Periodic Table, DNA, X-rays, Quantum Theory, or the connection between smoking and cancer;
    • gun powder was discovered by the Chinese, and
    • Archimedes had to discover the buoyancy principle because,
    • THAT’S HOW GOD INTENDED IT!!!

So child of God

  • don’t give up on dramatic miracles, but
  • don’t wait for them either.
  • It is God’s will that you live your life in obedience to him
    • with or without miracles.
  • The ONE MIRACLE that you can be sure of is this:
  • LEARN, UNDERSTAND, AND USE
    • the laws and principles
      • that God has put into his creation,
    • and seek his favor, and
  • YOU WILL MEET YOUR GOD GIVEN GOALS.
  • THAT’S HOW GOD INTENDED IT!!!!

LET’S DO THIS!  YOU CAN DO THIS!!

(Next post: how the perspective above helps us deal with the problem of evil and suffering!!)

 

 

Why I (As a Bible Believing Christian) Cannot, and Will Not Be Voting for Donald Trump!

All the benefits of my Vote for Donald Trump Appear to be
Material, Temporal, Earthly

  • More Conservative Judges

    • Inasmuch as I want a society
      • where conservative values are respected, this
    • pertains mostly to America, not the Kingdom of God,
      • when judges are appointed
        • by both sides
        • solely for partisan control of the judiciary,
          • and it will ultimately corrupt justice
            • for everyone, forever (!);
    • will not prevent the ongoing moral decay of humanity
      • predicted in the Bible, as we move toward the end-times!
    • Deuteronomy 1.16:  “‘Hear the cases between your brothers, and judge righteously between a man and his brother or the alien who is with him.” 
      • That is, justice must be blind to even the closest earthly affiliations.
  • The Possibility of Overturning Roe vs. Wade

    • Inasmuch  as I am pro-life
      • (in Church and personal life
      • and I will work to reduce abortion in society
        • in other ways other than using the force of law)
      • I am also pro-choice (as a matter of law in society), and
    • inasmuch as I will like to reduce abortions in the US,
      • the church will do a better job to impact society for God
        • by modelling selfless, holy, and cross-bearing lives as people of faith,
        • than to try to wield the corrupting tools of political power
          • to force social change; that is,
      • making abortion illegal
        • constrains action by force of law, it
        • does not change people and
        • is only a temporary fix, to the eternal problem of the
          • sinfulness of man, and it
        • does not address immorality within the Church itself;
      • I also have hope that God has a plan even for unborn babies
        • as I believe he does for infants who die early!
    • Matt. 18.10:  “See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that in heaven their angels always see the face of my Father who is in heaven.”
  • A friend of the (mostly white) Church in the White House

    • is temporary, of this earth, not the kingdom of God
      • if the Church cannot criticize that ‘friend’,
      • if the Church must always praise that ‘friend’,
      • if the Church must explain away, excuse, and lie (‘spin’),
        • when that ‘friend’ lies, divides, and is unrepentant of
          • deceit, meanness, pride and boastfulness, narcissism, and adultery,
        • and thereby abandon its basic mission to a lost world:
          • faithfully proclaim the truth and will of God
          • that we must be
            • true, loving, meek and lowly, selfless, and faithful to the wife of our youth, welcoming, be wronged instead of wronging others, give vengeance to God instead of always ‘fighting back.’
    • Faithful prophetic witness
      • to powerful (and sometimes corrupt) political leaders (kings)
      • is clear in the Bible.
        • It usually involves truth, rebuke, courage, and great risk:
        • Samuel (Eli), Samuel (Saul), Nathan (David),
        • Elijah (Ahab, Jezebel, Ahaziah), Elisha (Ahab), Micaiah (Ahab)
        •  Isaiah (Manasseh), Jonah (Nineveh),
        • Jeremiah (Zedekiah), Daniel (Nebuchadnezzar, Belshazzar),
        • John the Baptist (Herod)
        • Jesus (Pilate), Peter (Sanhedrin);
        • the Early Church (the Sanhedrin); and
        • Paul (Agrippa).
        • It is never a cozy relationship as the one we see between
          • the White House and white evangelical American leadership.
  • Strong Economy?

    • As good as that sounds,
      • a strong economy is of this earth, not eternal
      • Mark 8.36: “What does it profit a man [nation]….”
    • What if
      • (as the signs are beginning to show, and
      • as Donald Trump continues to gamble
        • with the economy and
        • with the livelihood of millions of Americans,
        • using trade wars),
      • the economy takes a downturn,
        • as is expected every now and again?

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  • Strong Immigration Enforcement?

    • This excites those
      • whose primary concern is America
        • not the Kingdom of God,
      • who may be driven by
        • lack of knowledge and compassion, fear, distaste, and/or
        • indifference towards
          • those who are different, who are weak, and destitute;
      • who have forgotten, who ignore the fact,
        • that the Kingdom of God is all tribes, tongues and nations
        • that everyone ‘came from somewhere else’,
        • that the Bible overwhelmingly teaches love and welcome
          • for the weak, the widow, the fatherless, the alien ,strangers (!)
        • that Mary, Joseph, and the Baby Jesus were themselves refugees
          • to Egypt from political violence!
    • Matthew 24.44:  “Then they also will answer, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to you?’”
    • Revelation 7.9 “…from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb….”
  • Strong Military and National Defense,

    • pertains to only America, not the Kingdom of God;
    • is material, temporary, and earthly.
    • Ephesians 6.  “For we do not wrestle not against flesh and blood…”
  • Second Amendment Rights

    • Is only of this earth, and temporary,  and
    • when promoted unreasonably and at all cost, it
      • UNDERCUTS THE MESSAGE OF THE CROSS:
        • selfless love,
        • sacrifice,
        • give instead of taking life,
        • “turning the other cheek”,
        • “Nevertheless, let your [God’s] will be done not mine”
          • not my right(!)
          • [Jesus!]
      • lacks any sound biblical and theological support.
      • Matt. 16.24: “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.”
        • The choice between a gun and the cross is easy
          • I CHOOSE THE CROSS!

Next PostWhy a Vote For Donald Trump has Negative Long Term/Eternal Consequences for America and the Church.

About Reach

A little introduction about Reach Ministries Int’l!

Beginnings

  • After much prayer, I began activities for this ministry in March this year
    • when my family finally joined me in Greenville Area of SC.
    • This blog was started in 2017.
  • Right now it is
    • me, my wife of 36 years and our children,
    • my good friend Elvis Muhabwa from Uganda,
    • former colleagues, friends, and well wishers, disciples, etc.
      • from around the US
        • in Illinois where I was a pastor for 13 years and
      • around the world who are praying for this ministry, and it can be
    • anyone who has a personal relationship with Jesus Christ as Savior or who wishes to have such a relationship with him, and who identifies with the Vision, Mission, and Profile of the ministry below.

More About Dr. Ray please also see the link at the home page.

  • In addition, My gifts are
    • church planting,
    • teaching,
    • prayer and intercession
    • prophecy
    • faith
      • I am a dreamer!
      • I believe in miracles (both:
        • the one-of-a kind, all-at-once action of God, and
        • the slow, over-time irresistible favor of God,
          • in answer to prayer!)

The Vision

  • Reach Ministries:  Army of Worshipers whose ultimate prayer is that God is glorified in and through each of them, who are passionate about achieving their God-given dreams and aspirations, and who promote and enjoy healthy, meaningful, and fulfilling relationships in community.

The Mission

  • Through God-centered worship, sound biblical teaching, practical training in important life skills and by creating diverse opportunities for healthy interactions, relationships and service to others, Reach Ministries will raise an Army of Worshipers to fulfill the vision.

The Three Pillars

  • Reach Upwards to God (He is always reaching down to us in Love!)
  • Reach Forward to your goals (Everyone one can achieve their God-given goals)
  • Reach Outward to Others (To give and to receive; to bless and to be blessed in community!)

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  • Why “Reach”?

    • Because we need to respond to God’s invitation to a relationship with him
    • Because we need to keep moving, keep growing, keep getting better
    • Because we need to seek others, see, listen to, serve, and help others
      • which is the  greatest source of fulfillment:
        • we can receive in life;
        • a meaningful and positive impact on others,
        • the greatest legacy ever!

Interested? What can you do?

  1. Share, pass the word around about the following opportunities
  2. Email me at reach4himwdray@gmail.com to join small/prayer group(s)
  3. Follow Reach Ministries on Twitter at reach4himwdray
  4. Follow Reach Ministries on Facebook at reach4himwdray
  5. Check this blog for updates, encouraging, positive, and daily posts
    • (except Sunday).
  6. Subscribe to our YouTube Channel Reach! when it comes online soon.
  7. Pray
  8. As the Lord leads!

Believe! – 2

Some Basic Truths For Meaningful, Happy and Successful Life

Believe that:

  • There is a God Almighty

    • He is
    • He sees
    • He knows
    • He loves
    • He will judge
    • He is sovereign
      • (owes no one any explanation, and is
      • free to do whatever he wills,
        • with his creation)
    • He is Holy but he is also merciful
  • You are Special

    • One of a kind
    • In a good way, despite or because of
      • what you did in the past
      • what someone did to you in the past
      • your DNA profile
      • where you were born
    • You have something to say, to give, to contribute, to do
      • in this world;
      • a legacy to leave behind,
      • a mission to accomplish, and
      • a dream to fulfill.
      • Your life has meaning!
    • You are of infinite value
      • to God who loves you and died for you
        • on a cross!
      • to those who love you
        • mom, dad, grandpa, grandma, siblings, bff etc.
        • You add meaning, joy and happiness to their lives.
        • For those who may not ‘love’ you,
          • They are not looking at your true value.
          • They are looking at something other than
            • who you really are!
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  • Things can and Do Change

    • Other opportunities will open
      • Closed doors may become open
      • New doors will open up
      • ‘Doors’ can become walls or
      • ladders may be provided to scale walls!
    • People can change
      • Friends can become enemies
        • and vice versa.
      • Bosses can become subordinates
        • and vice versa.
      • Doubts can become trust
        • and vice versa.
      • Opponents can become team-mates
        • and vice versa.
    • Miracles (impossible ‘coincidences’) can happen
    • New methods, medications, procedures, approaches will be invented
      • making it easier to get where you want to go in your life!
  • Reality, Facts, and Truth Rule in the Long Run

    • There are no ‘alternative facts’
    • Opinions, feelings, emotions, loyalties change, facts don’t
    • Evidence based choices are best
    • Respect True Scientific Discoveries
      • God is the ultimate scientist
      • They are foundation to practically all human achievements 

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  • The Other Side of Life Will Be Different

    • All tears will be wiped away;
    • No more sorrows, sickness, death, or evil,
    • No more scammers, swindlers, thieves, liars, sociopaths;
      • Those who (we) think they ‘got away with it’
        • will not escape the ultimate justice,
          • guaranteed by God!
    • If you have invested in it!
      • I recommend Jesus to you, Personally!
    • Don’t think there will be need for ‘Faith’
      • Faith will become sight
      • It will be like the Garden of Eden all over again!

Follow Reach Ministries on Twitter and Facebook;  Contact:  reach4himwdray@gmail.com

YOU CAN DO THIS, LET’S DO THIS!

 

Life After Defeat?… Yes! (2)

In order to have a meaningful and successful Life after Defeat, Step 1 is to separate Who YOU ARE from WHAT HAPPENED (the event).  Now the next steps:

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Photo by Simon Migaj on Pexels.com
  • Take Time to Reflect
    • Avoid far reaching decisions while you are ‘feeling blue.’
      • Choices under such conditions are likely to be
        • emotion driven,
        • ill advised, and
        • wrong.
    • Learn from the experience.
      • Who to trust
      • What to do
      • A better way
  • Keep Things in Perspective
    • The Time Perspective
      • There may be other opportunities.
      • Take the long view.
        • How will this look one, two, five, or ten years from now?
        • How will this look from the other side of eternity?
      • You may have gone through this in the past,
        • remember how you made it through then?
          • You can do it again!
    • The ‘Others’ Perspective
      • In the past your ‘win’ meant others lost!
      • Your experience may not be the best,
        • but it is not the worst either.
      • Others have survived such things
        • so can you!
    • The ‘God’ Perspective
      • He lives, he sees, he knows, he understands, and
        • he loves YOU!
      • He is in control
      • He does not make mistakes
      • All Things Are Possible with him
  • Consider Alternatives
    • Do it again!
      • Success sometimes (often) comes only after several tries
      • ‘Third time is the charm’
      • Believe!
    • Adjust Your Line of Attack (approach)
      • More and better preparation
      • Note the ‘signs’ along the way and make adjustments
    • Change Direction
      • You may not be a fighter pilot but
        • you will be able to design the planes they fly in
      • You may not qualify or be approved to be a doctor
        • but you will be an excellent nurse practitioner or
        • a medical technician, or a surgical nurse, etc.
      • You may not qualify to become an engineer
        • but you will be an excellent and successful mechanic!
      • You get the idea!

You can Do this – Let’s Do this!

Contact:  reach4himwdray@gmail.com

Regrets?!

Not Many

  • Thank God!

I wish I spent more

  • one-on-one time
    • with my children
      tilt shift lens photography of woman wearing red sweater and white skirt while holding a boy wearing white and black crew neck shirt and blue denim short
      Photo by Nicholas Githiri on Pexels.com
      • when they were younger
    • making more memories
    • listening
      • not more money
  • Others?
    • I would have chosen
      • Less of me and
      • more of others

As you grow older

  • This is the kind of legacy that
    • seems more valuable
    • requires no money, wealth, or worldly success
    • has far reaching implications
    • can change the world.
  • The kind that gives the greatest pleasure
    • when the children and grandchildren
      • celebrate you
        • on your birthday.

Philippians 2.4

  • Let each of you look
    • not only to
      • his own interests, but also
    • to the interests of others.