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Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

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Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that - Martin Luther King Jr.

Martin Luther King did not only say these words — he lived these words. He lived a life of purpose, sacrifice, and example, shining the light and love of Jesus into some very dark places. He believed all men and women are created by God and in the image of God, and he believed that standing up for the oppressed was worth dying for. Dr. King was one of America’s greatest Pacesetters. His example is still worth following today. This is why our country, our city, and our school celebrate his life with a national holiday. This Martin Luther King Jr. Day, here are three ways we can honor the life of Dr. King:

  • Learn more about him (and help your family do that same).
  • There are so many great resources and events where we can learn about what he did and how his actions helped change our nation. Here are a few videos and a movie that can help you learn more.

  • Take action like he did. Serve someone who may not have the same privileges and advantages as you do (and help your family do the same).
  • Praise God for Dr. King’s life and be inspired by how he lived a life of faith that points us to the perfect light, Jesus.
  • I encourage you to listen to “The Power of Unearned Suffering: Celebrating MLK’s Legacy after 50 Years.” This is a talk by Mika Edmonson at the Gospel Coalition’s MLK50 Conference.

    This conference and this talk in particular have made big impact on my life.

    A few highlights include:

    • Learn about how Jesus gave us the pattern of faith and suffering with the cross.
    • Take social suffering seriously enough to get involved — weep with those who weep (Romans 12:15).
    • Understand that love is at the center of what Jesus taught. “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another” (John 13:35).
    • Take hope seriously enough to stay involved. Living what you believe and suffering with and for others is never easy.
    • “The light of the world does not have an expiration date. Only the darkness in the world has an expiration date.”

    I am always encouraged by the faith of people who fully live what they believe. Martin Luther King Jr. did this as well as anyone. While he was just an imperfect human being with flaws like any of us, Martin Luther King Jr. spoke often of his hope in the one who was perfect. He knew he could live out his faith because he knew Jesus would one day make all things new. He knew he could talk about light driving our darkness and love driving out hate because he knew the real light and the only one who loves us perfectly.

    “Jesus spoke to them, saying, ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.’” John 8:12.

    Have a great Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

    Howard Graham

    Howard Graham served as Chaplain at PDS and Executive Director of the Building Boys, Making Men program from 2018-2020.

    Building Boys, Making Men is a PDS-created program designed to give boys a godly vision and definition of manhood. We believe that boys should be intentionally taught about authentic manhood and have a biblical framework for making wise and edifying choices during their teenage years and beyond. The definition of manhood we teach our boys:

    A real man glorifies God by seeking an adventurous life of purpose and passion as he protects and serves others.