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A Day of Prophetic Mourning and Action

Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated on this day in 1968. Over fifty years later we still face the same issues he spoke and acted so passionately about. The time for a radical revolution of our morals and values has never been more needed.

#MLK taught us 50 yrs ago, what #COVID19 teaches us today: living wages, guaranteed health care for all, unemployment & labor rights are issues of right vs. wrong & life vs. death. #PoorPeoplesCampaign‬ 

‪Join us June 20, 2020: june2020.org

You can’t say you support #MLK and not support the policies he fought & died for! #EndRacism #EndPoverty #EndMilitarism #SaveTheEarth 

Join the #PoorPeoplesCampaign on June 20, 2020 for the Digital Mass Poor People’s Assembly & Moral March on Washington: june2020.org

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A Day of Honor…

“When people talk about celebrating the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, I always say you don’t honor prophets by celebrating them. You honor prophets by going to the place where they fell, reaching down in their blood, and picking up the baton to carry it the next mile of the way.” – Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II

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“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.” — Martin Luther King, Jr.

“We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.” — Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Everybody can be great…You only need a heart full of grace.” — Martin Luther King, Jr.

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What Can I Do?

“If you choose, you can end homelessness. If you choose, we can end hunger. If you choose, everybody can have healthcare…We are traveling around from community to community to build up that will. We don’t want to just shout into the darkness. We want to birth some light.”
— Reverend Liz Theoharis

It all begins with a decision. What will I do today to bring the light?

Choose wisely…

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MLK Day 2019

“We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.”

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Today is the holiday commemorating Dr King’s birth. Festivities are planned in Downtown Fort Worth later this morning. My grandkids have the day off from school. Government offices are closed, although not only because of the holiday. Some have been closed for a while. Thirty-one days to be exact…

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Enough

“I woke up this morning with my mind set on freedom…” The Justice Choir, Poor People’s Campaign

What a way to start the morning! I woke up early, left my sleeping wife and dogs, and took my coffee to the porch. A little cloud cover and a slight breeze made for an excellent morning to pray and meditate in the cool of the day.

Yesterday was the culmination of the last forty days of the Poor People’s Campaign, A National Call for Moral Revival. Fifty years ago this week, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. led the original Poor People’s Campaign to Washington D.C. I sat and listened to the livestream of the rally in Washington and became incredibly grateful for those that continue to work for justice, peace, and a better life for all people and not a select few.

I have to tell you about a news report about James Comey, the former FBI Director. It seems he was going to Dublin, Ireland on his book tour. Upon arrival he commented to his wife that they should tell the Irish immigration officials they were Canadian. They were ashamed to be Americans in the current world situation. I understand completely. I’m embarrassed by association, but I’m reminded by the Poor Peoples Campaign of the good, decent human beings who strive daily for social and economic equality and justice. They are what I always thought the country of my birth was about.

I’m grateful for the life God has granted me. I’m under no illusions about the advantages of my birth, my family, and even my home, especially when I compare my life to the majority of the world’s population. I live better than most and I know that’s a privilege and a blessing I’ve been given – even when we struggle with health and financial issues. My son, who doesn’t share my spiritual beliefs, asked me once if being poor meant that God thought less of poor folks. It’s a legitimate question. Watch a few minutes of most televangelists and it doesn’t take long to assume that you’re out of God’s favor if you aren’t blessed financially. According to them, you’re just not praying with the right heart. God is a cosmic Santa Claus and he’ll give you everything you ask for if you ask the right way and do the right things. It’s no wonder my son questions such a God! I would, too…

I know that humans have an innate ability to make a mess of things. I know from personal experience that I can be pretty good at creating havoc in my life and the community in general. I know that power, class, and social structures are created by fallible men and I can’t blame a loving Higher Power for their, or my place in the system. However, I am obligated by my relationship with the God of my understanding to speak out against economic and social injustice in the world. I guess that’s why I enjoyed the livestream so much. It touched my spirit and invited me to live and love better.

I’ve known poverty, both in the economic and the spiritual sense. Spiritually, my Higher Power calls me to poverty. In Matthew 5:3, Jesus said, “You’re blessed when you’re at the end of your rope. With less of you there is more of God and His rule”. The older versions of his sermon call it being “poor in spirit”. I couldn’t get out of the way until I had nowhere else to go. In recovery programs, it’s called ‘hitting bottom’. I was so poor spiritually that I had no way out of my predicament. If there’s anything to the ‘Prosperity Gospel’, it’s that when I finally recognize my spiritual poverty, I begin to experience God’s grace – and everything is grace – and what a prosperous life it is!

Economically, my wife and I have experienced ‘enough’. We live paycheck to paycheck but there’s always ‘enough’.  That’s what poor people ask for when the march in campaigns and hold rallies. That’s what they cry for when they ask for a return to morality – to live in a society of morals and values that don’t exclude them. Men and their institutions would have us believe in scarcity of resources, time, and money. Yet, God’s kingdom, His way of living, says there’s enough for all His kids. When the Poor People’s Campaign calls for a return to some semblance of morality they are saying ‘enough’ – not only is there enough wealth and resources to go around – they’re speaking to the morals and values we claim to hold dear. They are “speaking the truth to power”.

I’m filled with hope when I see people coming together to ask for ‘enough’ – enough food, enough healthcare, enough justice, enough economic and social equality – for everyone. I’m filled with hope when people take time out of their lives to stand together and try to do what’s right. I’m filled with hope that maybe, just maybe, there’s a tiny chance that the world my grandchildren inherit will be a little better, that they’ll have ‘enough’.

It’s easy to become jaded when I peruse the news as is my daily habit. Then I read about things like the couple in California who started a Facebook campaign to raise $1500.00 to post bond for immigrant families separated by the injustice of Mr. Trump and his cronies. As of yesterday, NPR reported that they’ve raised nineteen million dollars. It’s the largest fundraiser ever on Facebook. Suddenly, I’m not quite as embarrassed by being from America. I’m reminded of Jesus’ admonition to, “Keep an open house; be generous with your lives”. Sometimes, we get it!

This morning I’m filled with hope. I’m so grateful. It’s such a blessing to have ‘enough’…