When Has Your Faith Required Sacrifice?
Celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. Day
In every generation, God has raised up men and women of faith to participate in His Kingdom work. From Abel, Noah and Abraham to Ruth, Paul, Augustine and Audrey Wetherell Johnson, BSF’s founder, our lives are impacted by faithful believers who have answered the call to join in God’s redemptive work. While these faithful servants may not have fully understood the impact of their sacrifices at the time, they lived with “confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see” (Hebrews 11:1).
Today, we remember Martin Luther King Jr., another man who influenced the culture around him with the love and justice of Christ. Fixing his eyes on Jesus rather than his circumstances, Dr. King sacrificed his comfort, his reputation and, ultimately, his life.
Dr. King’s hope and vision for a gospel-centered community can be seen in his famous Letter From a Birmingham Jail. While incarcerated in 1963, Dr. King took pen to paper, describing the horrific treatment of Black Americans and sharing the experience of discrimination and oppression. As he addressed the clergymen who were his most vocal critics, he sought peace and brotherhood. His most urgent focus was to call all Americans to transformation and point them to a future hope that can be found in the peace and love of Christ.
He closed his letter by saying:
“Let us all hope that the dark clouds of racial prejudice will soon pass away and the deep fog of misunderstanding will be lifted from our fear-drenched communities and in some not too distant tomorrow the radiant stars of love and brotherhood will shine over our great nation with all of their scintillating beauty.”
We encourage you to read or listen to the Letter from a Birmingham Jail for yourself today. As the great cloud of witnesses that have gone before us, may we be open to God’s call to sacrifice as we “act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly” with our God.