I am very much a First Principle kind of girl. Honoring the inherent worth and dignity of every individual is extremely important to me, and I strive to be a living example of this in my own daily life. Accordingly, I find the state of the world today absolutely heartbreaking. I can understand the temptation of some to seek some individual or some group on whom to assign blame. I understand the temptation to give in to anger, to bitterness, to fear, to rage…
In 1967, during a speech at the 11th Convention of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in Atlanta, Dr. Martin Luther King jr. said:
“I have also decided to stick with love, for I know that love is ultimately the only answer to mankind’s problems. And I’m going to talk about it everywhere I go. I know it isn’t popular to talk about it in some circles today. And I’m not talking about emotional bosh when I talk about love; I’m talking about a strong, demanding love. For I have seen too much hate. I’ve seen too much hate on the faces of sheriffs in the South. I’ve seen hate on the faces of too many Klansmen and too many White Citizens Councilors in the South to want to hate, myself, because every time I see it, I know that it does something to their faces and their personalities, and I say to myself that hate is too great a burden to bear. I have decided to love. If you are seeking the highest good, I think you can find it through love.”
That inspires me. That serves as a reminder to me to remain strong, living my values; as a reminder of the ugliness that hate is; as a reminder to always seek the precious humanity, even in those individuals that seem to do their utmost to be unlovable.
I have decided to stick with love. I am inspired.
Are you inspired? Are you inspired to stand up, to work for justice?
Are you inspired to climb a mountain? Have a dream? Fight for freedom?
What is your spirit moved to do?
When we act in accordance with what our spirit is moved to do as Dr. King did – even in the face of crushing oppression and tremendous opposition – we provide inspiration to those around us. We become a living example of our values and we inspire others, not just to stand up, but to speak out and to make strides forward toward – to quote Dr. King – “Transform[ing] the dischords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood”.