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Bigger Love

Yesterday, I was off work for Martin Luther King Jr. Day where I celebrated by painting and putting our house in order then going in the afternoon to a celebration of Dr. King’s life. As an act of service as well, we took an offering for a local organization that helps the poor of our city in so many ways (Love INC) while also connecting people on how to give for relief in Haiti.

It was such a blessed time.
I preached on Sunday about living life “hands out” instead of “hands in our pockets.” Dr. King struggled and suffered, led a movement and died for his work.  Living “hands out” isn’t just concerning help for immediate needs, but serving the bigger picture, effecting society-at-large and changing the world.
I am thankful that we can ease suffering, if even a little, right where we are today. We can make a difference in someone’s life. Jesus did just that in the time He spent on the earth—He healed, freed, forgave, loved, hugged, laughed—many were transformed by the living truth that He brought.
When the time came, He opened His hands again, allowing them to be nailed to a cross that was ours.  He could have called the hosts of heaven to stop the injustice, but instead He suffered so that injustice could be swept away.  The punishment He bore was not His, but He trusted that His brokenness would be our restoration.
I’m challenged again today. 
We live in a prosperous nation. Even in times of economic turmoil, the majority is still fairly comfortable. It’s easy to forget that we are called beyond just being “good” people who do a few acts of service to ease our guilt.
We are called to love like Him. Stop and ponder the magnitude of that statement. Love. Like. Him.
That means living and dying for something greater than ourselves. As part of the celebration yesterday, we watched part of a video about Dr. King’s life. He understood that hatred could only be combated with love. If the leaders and people of this movement let their (justified) anger spill into violence, they would have been crushed by the powers-that-be.
Living with your hands out means trusting God with your life, purpose, and dreams. In life or death, there is nothing that will stop what God has planned to do. I want to be consumed by His love that is bigger, deeper, wider, greater, and more profound than anything the world has to offer. 

I won’t have to force myself then, I’ll be compelled and gladly join with the many saints who have lived their lives to stand up and be counted, changing the world,  because I realize…

Love never fails (1 Cor. 13:8).

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