Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Last summer, while in Haiti with a mission team, my family and other families and many of our friends and partners, I sat on the stage with a group of pastors in a packed church and heard a Haitian Pastor say, "Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said he had a dream about children of every color playing together and living together. Today I have seen that dream fulfilled as I look around this church with people of every shade worshipping together."

Not until we go out of our way to get out of the way will God make these kinds of experiences commonplace in our lives; expanding the breadth and depth of our experiences in this world. It is to our benefit and to God's glory that we set aside fear, assumptions, and apprehensions and embrace the reality that there is but one human race. When we do, a myriad of possible experiences await us!

The Christian message is nothing if not that because Sam has been conquered so has our separation from God and from one another, in all the forms it takes. "There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus." Galatians 3:28 (NIV)


Kareem Abdul-Jabbar said, "I have mixed emotions about Martin Luther King Jr. Day. For me, it’s a time of hopeful celebration — but also of cautionary vigilance. I celebrate an extraordinary man of courage and conviction and his remarkable achievements and hope that I can behave in a manner that honors his sacrifices. And while Dr. King still has his delusional detractors who have a dream of dismissing his impact on history, it’s not them I worry about. His legacy may be in more danger from those who admire him. Why? Because it’s tempting to use this day as a cultural canonization of the man through well-meaning speeches rather than as a call to practice his teachings through direct action."

King championed ideals proceeding from and clinging closely to essential Gospel truths such as, “You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well. If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles." Matthew 5:38-41 (NIV)

There is much work yet to be done in this noble land in the areas of social injustice and racial inequality, but great strides have been made and the primary battle ground is now, as it has always been, in each one of our hearts. And only transformed by the love of Christ can the battle in our hearts be won. Then, we must, love out, love out, and speak out that precious Gospel in front of our children, our families, our communities, and the world...


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