God’s purpose for every situation in my life is completely opposite to Satan’s purpose for my life. God’s always being good, and Satan’s always being evil.
“But he knows the way that I take; when he has tried me, I shall come out as gold.” Job 23:10
Man, I learned that truth in a very funny way today.
That truth was very real to me this morning as I sat down in my easy chair to get into the Word this morning. I normally spend time with God after I am all ready to go for the day, and this morning was no exception. My pants and shirt were all ironed and tucked in. I had my shoes on, contacts in, and my hair was even gelled. I had just poured a cup of fresh Starbucks Christmas Blend. I turned to the book of Ephesians, and everything was completely normal. I was reflecting on truths that popped out at me. I thought of how Dr. Olinger called Ephesians 1 the Christmas passage for the believer, because every other verse is like another package to open on Christmas day. I read through the passages on the new man, the truths about how I ought to walk in the Christian life, and how God is able to do abundantly more than we can ever ask or think. The Word was tasting good. I read into chapter 5, the passage on husbands and wives, and I read Christ’s purpose for the church, to “present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle…that she might be...without blemish.” In mid-verse, I had taken a sip of coffee, and for some odd reason, I bumped the edge of the coffee cup sending hot coffee all over my freshly ironed pants and shirt. I’m not joking, as my eyes looked at the words spot, wrinkle and blemish, a spot wrinkle and blemish of coffee worked its way onto my pants. I have to smile about it now, because that’s just hilarious. Blemish on the page, Blemish on my pants...clean fresh ironed khakis. Hah.
Though I’m laughing now, that wasn’t my first reaction this morning. Instantly I was presented with an opportunity, God had a purpose in the occasion. But amazingly, so did Satan. God wanted my whole heart. He wanted to test me to see if my attitude was fickle to the point that I would lose an opportunity to commune with Him. Satan wanted my anger to destroy any fellowship I was having with my Father. Thankfully, after asking God to forgive my initial outburst…a seething sigh, the Holy Spirit brought this thought to mind. His purpose for my life is always good, and Satan’s purpose for my life is always bad. They are always opposite, and never coordinating. I praise my Father for that truth today.
Come learn the lesson of the rod:
The treasure we have found in God.
He is not poor nor much enticed
who loses everything but Christ.
The Misery of Job and the Mercy of God
If you haven't ever played the game Settlers of Catan, you are missing out. It won board game of the year in 1996 in Germany and in 1997, it won the same in the states. Amazingly addicting, I find myself thinking, when am I going to get to play Settlers again?
A MUST CLICK FOR CATANERS! For gameplay variatians: University of Catan
Here is a review of the game: The Games Cabinet
Buy it Here: Cool Stuff Inc.
Check out a computer version here: Catan Online
Great for fellowshipping and playing at the same time. I can't say enough about this game!
Let us not flutter too high, but remain by the manger and the swaddling clothes of Christ, “in whom dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily.”
What is it about the voice of Bing Crosby and Nat King Cole? I'm pretty sure that without thier voices, my season would not be as homey. The CD thats playing right now opens up with this great big band version of Sleigh Ride. I turned it on this morning and was pleasently rushed into the world of silver garland, popcorn chains, and gaudy plastic stars donning Christmas trees. A part of me loves that cheesy nostalgic side of Christmas.
But, oh how quick I am to miss what it is all about. My choir is rehearsing tonight for our Christmas program, Emmanuel: Our God with Us. The songs I picked to fill the program remind me of how important the fact that Jesus Christ was our Emmanuel. I get soo secular. Oh how much I need to remember that I am dead to this world.
But...I think one wonderful side of all this is that, when I place the coming of Christ to earth at the top priority of my thoughts and motives, my excitement/responses/joys in the season are simply an overflow. If I am thankful for Christ coming to earth, I am full of joy for the time spent with family. If I turn my attention to the glorious virgin birth, my joy in giving gifts full. If my heart is full with the amazing gift I recieved because Christ came to earth, oh how complete my Christmas is. By walking by the Spirit this Christmas, I cannot gratify the desires of the flesh by seeking my own way this Christmas. (GALATIANS 5:17)
I need to be reminded of this. I need it, because I am so prone to wander. I am so prone to think of my Christmas experience, when really I'm missing it. Because my experience will only be full when I treasure the Christ for which I have the oppurtunity to celebrate this year.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, (EPHESIANS 1:3)
Devotional study of the attributes of God as displayed in the Old Testament. Beautifully exegeted passages that demand application to your soul.
A life changer for me. Dr. Jaeggli's class at Bob Jones University, The Prophets, and this book have awakened my soul to a love for Old Testament study. I found this book to be rich in magnifying my God...than to look in the last chapter and find that my Savior is all these qualities granted me amazing times of worship. I cannot recommend this book enough. It is practical, deep, and easy to read. I wish there was more of this one.
“And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart.” – Luke 2:18-19
Christ was born and there was a hubbub in Bethlehem. Shepherds had seen angels declare the birth of a new baby Boy. Everyone that heard was wondering. But Mary, almost quietly, kept, or treasured, all these things in her heart. Why did Mary treasure these things? Remember with me, Mary was a virgin. The child she just delivered was all God’s working. Nine months earlier, Mary was visited by the angel Gabriel who foretold of Christ’s reign. What then did Mary quietly treasure when everyone else was wondering? Mary treasured the truth that Christ, her son that had just entered the world, was her Savior.
We are surrounded with hubbub this season. Stores blare every style of Christmas music, molded plastic Santas stand watch across the front of Wal-mart, and every other house on your street has Christmas lights hanging from the gutters. What is your response to all this commotion? Treasure the reason behind all the racket. The true reason. Christ, our savior…the ruler of all nations, was born.
No, I did not title my blog after the name of a type of casual shoe popular in the late-eighties. I am also not planning on teaching any classes on cross-stitch to elderly ladies at the Civic Center.
CROSS T R A I N I N G
The personal blog of Jonathan William Kopp is to be entitled CrossTraining.
I choose this, because that is where I am at in my life up to this point. I am in CrossTraining. God has been and will forever be working me over with the concept that all I have to boast in in this life is because of the cross. Every good and every bad thing I have, I have because of the cross, because Christ purchased it for me. Therefore, I name this blog CrossTraining…that I might be ever mindful of my quest of bringing others to the cross and taking up my own cross...daily for the Lord Jesus Christ.
The CrossTraining concept communicates my fledgling pursuit to place every area of my life into perspective under the importance of the cross. Because of the cross, I work and live. Because of the cross, I gather with others in worship. It is because of the cross that I am what I am. CrossTraining describes all that in a short statement. Cross Training to me is the business every believer is in. It is teaching others to magnify the supremacy of the cross in every area of their life. I believe that no one can think too much on the cross, because at the cross there is deep conviction, humble servitude, heavenly awe, salvation and desire to evangelize.
WHY THE CROSS?
The theme verse for this blog is to be Galatians 6:14. “But far be it from me to boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.”
As I study the life of Paul, I am amazed. The man was staggeringly brilliant. He kept track of churches miles apart, he was a powerful leader, he knew suffering continually, and he was able to strive till the end. I look at His life, and I find something intriguing. One passion. One truth. One consistent pursuit. The Cross. Paul was consumed with the sacrifice of his beloved savior at Calvary. How else could he have lived his life with the fervor and undying energy? He said in Phillipians, “whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ.” (Phillipians 1:7-8)
“Let us abide hard by the cross and search the mystery of His wounds” (C. H. SPURGEON) because, “the blood-stained cross is the blazing center of the glory of God.” (JOHN PIPER) “…It is the fire at which the flame of our love is kindled, but we have to get near enough to it for its sparks to fall on us.” (JOHN STOTT) And in all our searching, “The Spirit does not take [us] beyond the cross, but ever more deeply into it.” (J. KNOX CHAMBLIN)
Join me in CrossTraining.