One day I was driving my niece home from preschool and I asked her how her day was and what she learned in school. She said, “Hate is bad, love is good, we should love God and Jesus.” Seems like simple advice, yet if we look at our world today in many areas we are still missing the mark. Original translations of the Bible define sin as “missing the mark”. The mark, referring to the standard of perfection established by God and evidenced by Jesus.
Scripture tells us “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”( Romans 3:23) We all fall short daily, but the hope in this comes in Genesis 1:27 we are created in the image of God.
Reflecting on the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. this week, I am in awe of his passion for wanting to make changes peacefully. While we honor him for his fight for freedom for all, I also believe his message was a message of love. We are called to love one another, but we have a tendency to be enslaved to sin: anger, envy, pride, selfishness, gossip, slander, hate. God wants us to be free and He gave us Jesus to set us free from sin. Pastor Mark Job suggests the more we focus on our relationship with Jesus, the less we desire the things that distract us from him. The more we love others like Jesus loves us, we grow in peace and joy.
Making a choice to love all, especially our enemies, may seem like an impossible task, but we have been given the Spirit of the Lord. “Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.” (2 Corinthians 3:17) As the Holy Spirit intercedes on our behalf, we become convicted of areas in our life where change is needed. We are transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory from the spirit. (2 Corinthians 3:18) I believe this is the transformation that Dr. King knew was needed for change to take place.
May you be inspired this coming week as the Holy Spirit works in you and be encouraged by the lyrics from one of my favorite praise groups, Shane and Shane.
“For freedom you set me free and yes I am free indeed, you rewrote my name, and shackled my shame you opened my eyes to see I am free.”