Jon Stolpe Stretched

What's S-t-r-e-t-c-h-i-n-g me now?

TMV1 – Live The New Life: Christ The Center (2 Corinthians 5:17)

2012-09-03 16.45.51

Christ the Center

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!
2 Corinthians 5:17

IN CHRIST – United with Christ through faith in him and commitment to him.

NEW CREATION – Redemption is the restoration and fulfillment of God’s purposes in creation, and this takes place in Christ, through whom all things were made and in whom all things are restored or created anew.

2 Corinthians 4:6 – For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.

The darkness of sin is dispelled by the light of the gospel – the new creation…the new birth.

When we decide to follow Christ (when we Believe, Repent, and follow Him in Baptism), we are new creations.  How amazing is that?!  I don’t think this means that we won’t still struggle with the “junk in our trunk”.  We will still have sin in our lives – that’s part of the human nature that we’ve been cursed with until we get to heaven.  But it does mean that we now have a spiritual nature that will go with us into the next life – a nature that is more aware of what God expects.  We are new creations.  And we are becoming new each day.

Today, may I live my life in this light.  May I understand and know that I’m made new through Christ and his defining act on the cross.  May Christ truly be the center of my life.


July 15, 2013 Posted by | verses | Leave a comment


I’m back here on the old site.  I will still continue to utilize the new site for most of my blogging, but I want to use this site for a while to test out some new ideas and themes.  So here goes…

Yesterday, our family arrived home from vacation to the Midwest.  It was a great opportunity to see family.  We drove quite a few miles.  I don’t know the exact numbers, but I think we logged 1,500 miles.  Needless to say, I was ready to be home and out of the car when we pulled into the driveway at 3:30 yesterday afternoon.

My wife and my son left to pick up one of our dogs leaving my daughter and I to unpack and clean up, go through the mail, and clean up.  After going through the mail (why do there have to be so many bills when you arrive home from vacation?), I decided to check the front porch to see if there were any packages on the front porch.  (This is often where the mail carriers leave packages for us when we’re not home.)  As I looked out the front windows to the porch, I was surprised to see a cat laying on the front porch.   At first, I thought the cat was sleeping, but I soon noticed that there were flies swarming around the cat.  This was not good.  The last time I saw flies around an animal was when six of our chickens died in the extreme heat of the summer.

I called our daughter over to the window to see if she recognized the cat.  Sure enough, it looked like our neighbors cat, Chester.  After confirming my fear, I walked out to the porch to check things out.  As soon as I came out the door, I noticed our neighbor in his backyard.  We exchanged a couple of words, and he confirmed that their cat had been missing.  Withing five minutes, he and his wife were on our front porch.  It was their Chester.

As our neighbor wrapped Chester in a towel, his wife shed some tears.  It was clear that Chester was not just a cat but a friend – a loved one.  I apologized for their loss, and they carried Chester to their house.  Their youngest daughter soon emerged from the house, and she quickly began to cry as she heard the news of Chester’s departure.

I’m sure it was a tough night for our neighbors.

Our pets mean the world to most of us.  I’m not sure about the eternal destinations of these beloved four legged friends, but I’m sure that they can do a lot to teach us about friendship, love, and loyalty.

When we lose our pets, it definitely leaves a hole in our heart.  There’s no question that we grieve.  And I think that’s okay.

Pray for our neighbors as they mourn the loss of their beloved Chester.

Do you have any pets?  What have they taught you about life, love, and loyalty?

July 15, 2013 Posted by | pets | 1 Comment