Happy Martin Luther King Weekend!
I’ve just returned from day two of the Baptist Peace Fellowship’s King Fling, which is being held right here in Louisville. I had the great privilege of hearing a concert tonight by Darrell Adams and Paul and Kate, from my church.
Mesmerizing. Uplifting. Wonderful!
I thought I’d share the joy and challenges of what I’ve heard the last two days by posting some King quotes. The man could turn a phrase and penetrate the heart. Enjoy and be challenged!
When you are right you cannot be too radical; when you are wrong, you cannot be too conservative.
The hope of a secure and livable world lies with disciplined nonconformists who are dedicated to justice, peace and brotherhood.
I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality. That is why right, temporarily defeated, is stronger than evil triumphant.
[upon receiving the Nobel Peace Prize - 1964]
Almost always, the creative dedicated minority has made the world better.
Like an unchecked cancer, hate corrodes the personality and eats away its vital unity. Hate destroys a man's sense of values and his objectivity. It causes him to describe the beautiful as ugly and the ugly as beautiful, and to confuse the true with the false and the false with the true.
Nonviolence is a powerful and just weapon. which cuts without wounding and ennobles the man who wields it. It is a sword that heals.
Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will.
I knew that I could never again raise my voice against the violence of the oppressed in the ghettos without having first spoken clearly to the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today -- my own government. For the sake of those boys, for the sake of this government, for the sake of hundreds of thousands trembling under our violence, I cannot be silent.
Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into friend.
My pastor, Cindy, challenged us last night to be aware of society’s tendency to honor the dead, pointing out that it’s always easier to ignore them and change their message once they’ve been killed off. Can I get a witness?
She also reminded us that King was not merely a protestor: He was an organizer. He didn’t protest for the sake of protesting, he used Direct Action to change corrupt and unjust systems.
Not merely protesting and certainly not just being quiet, but radically challenging the system to get Just results. May we all be so challenged.