Pastor Jay Monthly Update

       We are getting closer to Spring time as we near the month of March in a few short weeks.  In a few days it will be Valentine's Day and that means that love is in the air for many.  In the original Koine' Greek language there were several word's for love.  (Phileo) love, means that brotherly love we have for friends, relatives and neighbors and those we meet along the way.  (Ergos) love, is that love reserved solely for the man or woman we marry.  It is a special realtionship of both emotional and sexual intimacy shared between a man and wife.  (Agape) love, is the last word we will look at this month.  It is that love by which we choose to love others.  This love is needed in all the relationships we have with our (Phileo) friends and with our spouses and family members.  There are times when the emotional part of love just doesn't enter into our feelings with our friends, relatives and neighbors.  In addition, this is the kind of love that God says is possible for believer's in Jesus to offer and exhibit with even our our enemies.  In Luke 6:27, Jesus said, "But I say to you who hear, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you."   There are times when all of us, even believers, have to exercise that kind of Agape love.  Especially in today's culture where those who believe God's word is the infallible word of God with authority over all faith and life.  II Timothy 3:12 says, "All who want to live Godly lives in Christ Jesus, will be persecuted."

       When our marriges are struggling, it is Agape love that will save it.  When our relationships with our sons and daughters are being tested by those testy teenage years, when the words "I hate you" can be so easily flung, it is Agape love that will cause us to never give up on them.  In relationships with friends and neighbors where most people have accepted the "I have a right" to say anything I want culture, even if it is based on feelings and emotions that may be wrong, it is Agape love which will cause us to care for those hurting individuals whether they accept it or not. 

       Christ Community is a church that cares.  We don't play church.  We also do not strive for relationships that are "Minnesota Nice".  What is that you say? In Minnesota, during the past week of Super Bowl LII (52), there was an article about how many of the restaurant owners were refusing the Philadephia Eagles players and families dinner reservations because of the Eagles fans who had beaten up some Vikings fans in Philadephia's stadium two weeks before during the NFC Championship, in which the Eagles beat the Vikings, to go to the Super Bowl, hosted in Minneapolis, Minnesota no less.  The writer of the article interviewed a couple of restauarant owners who said, "In Minnesota, we won't physically harm you, we'll just handle it the passive-agrressive way, we'll just queitly behind the scenes not give you a reservation."  The writer went on to describe passive aggressive behavior.  Being angry at people and when seeing them face to face we are nice, but behind the scenes, we take care of being aggresive towards.

       That kind of behind the scenes, getting back at people, would not be Agape love.  The choosing to love an enemy as enemy is.  Sadly, many churches settle for "Minnesota nice".  People hold on to bitterness, anger, resentment, and they make wrong decisions because of it.  The enemy Satan, loves to introduce this kind of behavior into churches through tempatation which eventually gives birth to sin.  At Christ Community we seek to build disciples of Jesus who reject "Minnesota Nice."  We seek to build believers who keep short accounts, are not easily offended, who recognize that many times, feelings are to be rejected as not the authoritative measure for anyone.  We seek to build mature disciples, who choose Christ's sacrificial love, demonstrated in a willingness to serve and overlook peoples shortcomings, faults and unintentional mistakes.   As pastor of Christ Community, my wife and I are committed to helping people be genuine and humble servants who think the best about people, before thinking the worst.  

       We hope if you are seeking a church that is not fake, plastic, and Minnesota nice, you consider joining us.  

       Seeking to build Agape loving disciples of Christ!  

       Pastor Jay Lindstrom