1. Sometimes someone has to die for things to change. I don’t think we get this. In fact I think we have out right rejected this idea and are frantically trying to work our way around it. It won’t work. Sometimes someone has to die for things to change and unfortunately Dr. King proved this point. “Like anybody, I would like to live - a long life; longevity has its place. But I'm not concerned about that now. I just want to do God's will. And He's allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I've looked over. And I've seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the Promised Land. So I'm happy, tonight. I'm not worried about anything. I'm not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord. MLK
2. It is easier to be a coward than to be courageous. The coward and the courageous see the same things. They both know how to fix the problem. What’s the difference? Once acts and the other doesn’t. Dr. King is a great example of what it means to be courageous. “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” MLK
3. Criticism is coming if you confront the status quo. Dr. King confronted the status quo and was criticized heavily. If you create waves people will feel them, measure them and judge them. Listen, you could be the wisest person in the world (Jesus) and still be criticized. It’s unavoidable. Don’t waste your time trying to create a life where you will never be criticized.
4. Crooked sticks can write straight lines with God’s help. Most of us are aware that Dr. King had flaws. Yet in spite of this God was able to do some amazing things through him. One of the things that tends to hold me back is the reality of how jacked up I am. I’m encouraged by history that God can use anyone who is humble, teachable and available.
5. Most of us will never see the all the results of our efforts. Read that last sentence again. The most important things in life take time to develop and bear fruit. Think about it. Dr. King never saw “the promise land”. So take the words of the Apostle Paul to heart “Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.” (1 Corinthians 15:58)
6. People can accomplish more with others than they can by themselves. America is the land of the individual dream but few if any have lived a dream without the assistance of others. Dr. King is the undisputed hero of the civil rights movement but whenever you see him in a picture or video or hear his messages he’s never alone. Dr. King was arguably one of the most powerful men in American history but he needed people to unite under one vision and with one purpose in order to see justice prevail. “An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.” MLK
7. Holidays are a great time to say thank you to God for people who have contributed to our quality of life. Dr. King’s life has made my life better and there’s no debating that! I’m so thankful for the many people who came before me who lived! May God give us the grace to live as He has purposed us to. “Everybody can be great...because anybody can serve. You don't have to have a college degree to serve. You don't have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.” MLK