Friday, January 18, 2013

Stand Up

 A few years ago I encountered the Autobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr., edited by Clayborne Carson. Reading it, I was amazed at the compassion he felt for fellow human beings, despite beatings, threats, and other severe mistreat-ments. He practiced non-violent protest at all times and called upon others to do so as well. I remember the inspiration Dr. King had on me at that point, and that feeling has stayed with me.

Nowadays, I am reading a children's book about Martin Luther King, Jr. to my son, and it makes me very happy to assist in explaining what he stood for and what he helped to accomplish. However, the conversation of why he had to stand up for social justice is a sobering conversation to have with an almost 4 year-old. I hope to continue discussion with my son about Dr. King as we celebrate the upcoming Martin Luther King, Jr. Day this coming Monday (yes, the library will be open).

The following is a quote by Dr. King that I continually come back to in my life, and it really helps me stay the course through difficult times: "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." I encourage you to investigate Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. a little closer, either this weekend or sometime soon, even if it's just to explore a little context around some of his quotes. My hope is that you come away refreshed with a sense of peace and compassion and energized to go out and achieve positive change. I would certainly recommend his Letter from Birmingham Jail as a quality read in that vein.

"Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that." ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

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