Morning Meditation: Revenge

Unfortunately, unfairness and injustice exist in all facets of life.

In fact, today is a day set aside to honor the life of an individual who created a platform to fight injustice and inequality in America.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was a Baptist minister who advocated using nonviolent means to an end racial segregation who first came to national prominence during a bus boycott by African Americans in Montgomery, Alabama, in 1955. He founded the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in 1957 and led the 1963 March on Washington and is known as the most influential of African American civil rights leaders during the 1960s.

Because of his passion, intentionality, and efforts, he was instrumental in passing the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which outlawed discrimination in public accommodations, facilities, and employment, and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. In addition, King was awarded the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1964.

Transformational change happened regarding justice and equality due to his bold, courageous, and costly actions. His boldness and willingness to speak out for those who had no voice ended up costing him his life.

It’s interesting . . . the Pledge of Allegiance to the United States of America ends by saying, “with liberty and justice for all.”

Did you know that the form of the pledge we use today was primarily devised by Francis Bellamy in 1892 but not formally adopted by Congress as the pledge until 50 years later, in 1942?

So the pledge, which ends with proclaiming liberty and justice for all, was adopted in the middle of a time where discrimination based on someone’s color was at a height!

Do we really mean we want liberty and justice for all? Or are they words we say because we learned them at a young age and are desensitized to them and their meaning?

Despite how atrocious the conditions were for people of color during King’s life, his passion for nonviolence never waned. He saw nonviolence as “a courageous confrontation of evil by the power of love.”

He understood the danger and, ultimately, the evil associated with getting revenge. He combatted evil with love. We are called to do the same. And if we believe what we say, we are called to do it in ALL ways . . .

“With liberty and justice FOR ALL.”

Grace and Peace,