Pastor E.C. Maltbia
keeping the dream alive
On Monday, January 16 our community alone with fellow Americans across this country joined together to both celebrate and commemorate the life, labor, and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King. Jr. Dr. King is an icon of the civil rights movement and a beloved American hero. Today, I want to share with you three ways to keep the dream of Dr. King alive in 2023 and beyond.
First, we keep the dream of Dr. King alive by being men and women of strong character. During his I have a dream speech Dr. King said, “I have a dream that my four children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.” Having strong character is about being the same person in both public and private settings. Having a strong character is also about keeping your promises and walking with integrity. The continuation of the dream must be led by men and women of strong character.
Second, we keep the dream of Dr. King alive by treating others the way we want to be treated. From a 1964 speech given in St. Louis, MO Dr. King stated, “We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.” If we want to assist in keeping the dream alive, we must learn how to disagree in this country without being disagreeable. We must also go back to normalizing common courtesy and good old fashion common sense. The continuation of the dream must include fair treatment for all mankind.
Third, we keep the dream of Dr. King alive by serving in our community. During his Drum Major speech in 1968, Dr. King said these famous words, “Everybody can be great, because anybody can serve.” Service to the community can take various shapes and forms but I want to focus on paying attention to social issues. We, as a Christian community, cannot place our head in the sand and pretend like we live in a perfect world. We need to be well aware of current events, and longstanding problems that need to be corrected. In continuing the dream, we must find creative and affirming ways to make this world a better place.
Yes, Dr. Martin Luther King is an icon of the civil rights movement and a beloved American hero. We can keep his dream alive by being men and women of strong character, by treating others the way we want to be treated, and by serving in our community. I leave you today with Proverbs 31:8-9, “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. (9) speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.”