Common Ground: Emphasizing Selfishness Vs. Selflessness
We live in a world that seems to be growing further and further away from the values and morals that please God and that is commanded for God’s people to have. Certainly this makes our mission of sharing the good news of Jesus with unbelievers increasingly difficult. We may begin to wonder if there is any common ground between us and the unchurched, secular people that are around us. Have you ever asked yourself: “Where do I even begin? How do I start talking to that person?”
This growing divide between Christians and non-Christians is intimidating—even frightening. For this reason we might become discouraged to say anything at all. In our minds we might make the excuse that we are just too far away from those people. We might have the impression that those outside the church already have hearts that are so hardened against Christianity they wouldn’t even listen to us. We assume (and even know) that there are individuals who would slam the door in our faces because we think they are just “too far gone!”
Obviously, Jesus didn’t feel this way about people. He knew that people had sin-hardened hearts and He went to them anyways. He knew certain people were not listening at all to what He was actually saying, but he still spoke to them working to break down those walls of unbelief. He knew that there were people who were not just looking to slam the door in His face, but instead wanted to nail Him to a Roman crucifix and yet Jesus went to those people seeking them to turn and live! Jesus showed His love to people (unworthy, lost, sinful people) by putting them and their needs before Himself. He said Himself: “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.” (John 15:13) By His words and actions, Jesus taught that Love is all about Selflessness. And for you and me, we understand and appreciate this fact—because it was by Jesus’ selflessness that we have Salvation!
I believe that the distinction between Love (that is defined as: “selflessness,” “putting another before yourself”) and selfishness (being “self-seeking, “putting yourself before others”) is an opportunity for us as we approach the unchurched people around us. As we interact with people who may think the 10 Commandments are out of date or marginally optional—we can simply point out that selfishness is bad. This is still a commonly accepted truth. It is true for people of all backgrounds or cultures or ages or political parties. It is a common theme television and movies and literature—characters still have the concept that it is not helpful or good when people are acting selfishly.
All sin boils down to selfishness. On the otherhand, all love (in the Biblical understanding) boils down to selflessness. And this is what we find in our Savior—someone who was never selfish—but completely selfless. By His selflessness the guilt, blame, shame, and punishment for our selfishness is removed from us—we are forgiven. And by Jesus’ selflessness on our behalf, we are inspired and encouraged to give up seeking after our own wants and selfishness to show love and selflessness to others—we are inspired and encouraged to share the selflessness of Christ with those who struggle with selfishness.
-Pr. Luke Ulrich
Bible Classes at Mt. Olive
The following Bible Classes are offered at Mt. Olive:
11AM Sundays (BIC)
10AM 2nd & 4th Mondays (Veteran’s Bible Study)
8AM Tuesdays (Ladies Bible study)
9AM Wednesdays (Bible Study)
Bible Information Class (BIC) is available for anyone interested in learning more about our Christian faith. Please talk to one of the Pastors if you’re interested.
Serving Mt. Olive
1st Service: Ross Hermanson, Craig Brown, Broderick Brown, Will Holt, Nathan Younge
2nd Service: Robert Irwin, Scott Dzwonkowski, Dennis Soule, Kent Waletski
1st Service: Mike Smith, Silas Petersen, Darrell Iverson, Ray Iverson, Art Westphal
2nd Service: Paul Tweit, Keith Anderson, Lance Johnson, Dennis Runck, Bob Fosburgh, Blake Fosburgh
1st Servcie: Mark & Michelle Graham, Eldon Sting, Keith Anderson
2nd Service: Bob & Ruth Heidenreich,
Dan & Joanne Maas
1st Service: Dean & Kathy Kluge, Eldon Sting, Keith Anderson
2nd Service: Connie Long, Peggy Harstad, Mike & Anita Smith
June: Ruth Heidenreich, Elyse Haugen
July: Connie Meyer, Terri Westphal
June: John Schauer, Jim Gullixson
July: Genie Selvey, Joni Bode
Online Worship Services
Our Services are ARCHIVED ONLINE! Mt. Olive now has a page on VIMEO where our services are archived. Check it out: http://Vimeo.com/mountolive
Sr. Youth Group
This year’s Lutheran Youth Association (LYA) trip is to Dallas, TX on July 28-31, 2016. The convention’s theme is, “Two Kingdoms”. Go to: els.org/lya16 to register, if you haven’t already. The cost is $250, but $300 after May 1st. We have reserved up to three buses to leave from Mankato, MN on Wednesday, July 27th at 3PM, and return on Monday, August 1st by late-morning. The cost for the bus will be @ $250/person. (This is a separate cost than the LYA convention itself). We are asking for $100 down-payment by June 1st. The forms will be available soon! Any questions? Contact Lance Johnson, or Peter or Sarah Bloedel.
is scheduled for July 10-15 at Luther Island Camp, and is open to youth ages 11-16. The cost per camper is $275. Register online at: islandcamp.org (scroll down and click on our logo, then click “create new parent”) or ask the church office for registration and health forms.
A Special Thank You:
We would like to say thank you to everyone at Mount Olive for the sendoff last Sunday. We have had the joy of being part of your church and school family for the past three years and have enjoyed getting to know many of you. Thank you for the support you have given our family as Kurtis completed his seminary classes. Thank you for the fine education Fiona has received these past years. Thank you for the well wishes and gifts we received last Sunday. It was wonderful to fellowship with you! We will be leaving for Vero Beach, Florida on June 15, so we will still get to worship with you a few more Sundays. We wish you all the best in Mount Olive’s continuing ministry, and you will all be in our prayers. Thank you!
~Kurtis, Andrea, Fiona, and Dale Freimuth
Job Opportunities at Mt. Olive: After School Care Coordinator –
a part-time position, about 15-20 hours per week, which offers a competitive hourly wage and summers off. It involves overseeing the K-8 program from approximately 2:15-5:15PM on school days. The position officially starts in late August; however, some training will be provided as needed by the 2015-16 ASC coordinator. Administrative duties include scheduling and managing After-School Care staff, with a primary focus on keeping the children safe and occupied. If interested, please contact Mt. Olive at 345-7927 or email Principal Larry Rude at email@example.com.
Mt. Olive Lutheran School is seeking a Head Cook for our school lunch program. Competitive hourly wage. Qualified candidates would ideally possess a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science Degree, but this is not required. The Head Cook must participate in paid training to learn how to apply for state funding, recording of free/reduced lunches, and more. A course must also be taken to receive a license to serve food, and there would be some continuing education seminars/classes to take throughout the year. Some time would be spent with the Head Cook from the 2015-16 school year to help with the learning curve. Organizational skills are essential, and patience and love for children is also a big plus! Please contact Principal Larry Rude at507-345-7927, or firstname.lastname@example.org, if interested.
New 2 You:
Please continue to support New 2 You by volunteering, making donations, shopping our store, or praying for continued blessings on their efforts. If you would like to become a volunteer please call New2You at 507-385-1455. ~Mt. Olive provides volunteers on the first Saturday of every month. The sign-up sheet is on the table in the narthex.
Pizza Ranch Fundraiser for Camp Bus:
- Youth going to Camp Indianhead can sign-up to work at Pizza Ranch to raise funds for camp transportation. The fundraiser will take place onMonday, June 20during synod week from 4:30 to 9:00PM. Youth may sign-up for 1 or both shifts. Contact Lance Johnson for information 507-720-2130 or email@example.com.
Sunday School Offering Collection:
The Sunday School has collected $175.03 this semester for the Gift of Life for Ukraine.
Summer Fun For Kids!
Bring them to the park! The Moms On a Mission (M.O.M.s) group has set up park playdates on Wednesday mornings for the summer months. All are welcome (even dads)!!! Join us Wednesdays, starting June 1, from 9am-noon, bring a picnic lunch if you like. We will be rotating a different park each month. June is Spring Lake Park, July is Alexader Park, and August is Sibley Park. Playdates will be canceled if it rains. Questions? Contact Kristen Lukasek 507-382-7963 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Veteran’s Bulletin Board
Are there any veterans whose name we have missed on our bulletin board in the social hall? If so, please e-mail or call Lois Johnson at email@example.com or 278-3369. We also want to recognize any active duty member or member’s son or daughter on our board. We would like their name, military branch, years of service, and a picture if possible.
Annual Report Deadline:
All church Boards, Committees and Groups, should submit reports for 2015 to the church office by June 1, for the June 26th meeting. (Reports are needed from the Board of Deacons, Board for Stewardship, Board of Budget & Finance, Board of Trustees, Board for Parish Ed. and Youth, Evangelism Committee, Membership Committee, PTF, Booster Club and Lutheran Girl Pioneers.)
Minnesota Valley Lutheran High School
Position Opening at MVL:
MVL is also seeking applicants for the position of Administrative Assistant for Development. Applicants should possess an aptitude to maintain alumni and donor databases, plan and coordinate events, is proficient in the Microsoft Suite, and has a desire to be an integral part of MVL’s ministry. If interested, contact MVL Principal Tim Plath at 507-354-6851 or firstname.lastname@example.org for an application.
Save the Date!
Mt. Olive Golf Outing: Join Us for our 4th Annual Mt. Olive Golf Tournament! June 12th, 2015. Tee Times starting @ 2:30pm at the Minneopa Golf Club. Cost: $15 for Golf (Additional fee for golf cart) AND Food (and Prizes!) to follow at the Awards Banquet at the Minneopa Club House. All are invited and welcome to come—we will divide into groups and play a Texas Scramble format to make it a fun outing for golfers of all skill levels! (Any questions or comments can be directed to Pr. Luke Ulrich) Please sign up on sheet on Narthex Table.