Drake Field House on MLK Day

January 22, 2011

How did you spend your Martin Luther King Jr Day?  Some of you probably had to work, only wishing you were in an industry such as the financial industry that recognizes this National Holiday.  It is in fact a day meant to represent a National Day of Service in memory of the man with a DREAM!                         

For the third year, Drake Student Athletes and Coaches have participated in a Meals from the Heartland event.  Also, 20 youth from Des Moines’ I Have A Dream Foundation that were able to package alongside the Bulldogs. In a span of 2 hours they packaged a total of 51,840 meals.  Praise God!

Most of you know that I have a passion to serve and volunteer with Meals from the Heartland.  I love to see people of all backgrounds working together to serve a greater cause than themselves and provide for those who have much less.  As Martin Luther King Jr states when talking of the time after the Emancipation Proclamation, “One hundred years later, the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity.”

I cannot help but notice driving around Des Moines the amount of poverty in our own community, which pales in comparison to that worldwide.  My heart breaks everytime I see this, especially when I live in West Des Moines amidst neighborhoods where million dollar homes exist.  I ask myself, why do we ignore the reality of those in need?  I wish I had resources to help thousands, but I do not want it to be me alone and I know many of you help in big ways!  We must continue to do this together and inspire others to get involved in serving.

I ask you to read Luke 12:48.  Now I ask you to relate this to another excerpt from MLK Jr’s speech, “The marvelous new militancy which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to a distrust of all white people, for many of our white brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny. They have come to realize that their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom. We cannot walk alone.”  Much is expected of us as followers of God to provide for those in need and without serving their needs, the gap increases and there may be many left without Hope.

MLK Jr made it clear, “I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.’ ”  If we read Galatians 3:28 that follows, “There is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male and female.  For you are all one in Christ Jesus”(NLT Bible).  Martin Luther King Jr was spot on with this Truth.  We are all equal and we should not ignore those that are different than us, we must Love them and share life with them!

As I reflected on this great day of service, it was evident to me that in our Heart of Hearts we yearn to serve, but we must begin to ask ourselves why?  Where does this come from?  Do we serve for self-satisfaction or promotion, or do we serve because we are God’s Children and this is what he calls us to do?  We must have servant hearts and for this, I challenge you to continue to serve as you do, be more giving and seek out ways you can impact the lives of those less fortunate.  Our communities provide many great opportunities and we should not take that for granted!  I often find myself stuck in my own thoughts about my own problems or worries which distracts me from recognizing the needs of others at times.  In order for us to heed God’s call to serve and give that which has been given to us, we must begin to open the eyes of our heart.  Our challenge together as Children of God is to seek out new ways to serve on a daily basis.  Do not ignore the nudges(from God) that move you to help a complete stranger or step outside of your comfort zone to impact the lives of others!  Serve with a servant heart and rid of oneself.  Give Glory to God who provides for us and allows us to serve those in need!

I have a DREAM, that the people of this world get to know God in a way that will change the focus of their lives, so they pour out rather than guard what is theirs.  In reality, nothing on this earth is ours, because if we believe in God we must know that he has provided everthing in creation and we are simply temporary stewards of that which is in our possession.  Share and share abundantly!