-by Tim Bias
Today, January 15, is the actual birthdate of Martin Luther King, Jr. We can call to mind much of what he said and how he led our country as a prophet of God. He spoke often of putting on the “weapon of love.”
Responding to those who resisted the emerging civil rights movement, King asserted, “We will counter your force with soul force, we will match your ability to hate with our ability to love.” And he reminded us that at the heart of Jesus’ life and message is the call to be peacemakers and reconcilers. “Violence never brings permanent peace,” he said, “It solves no social problems; it merely creates new and more complicated ones.”
We live in a world thirsty for this gospel of peace. We need Dr. King’s reminders of integrity in words and action. Just as King spoke of and lived into the gospel of Jesus, we need to give voice and live into the gospel of Jesus. Then, we can unite our voices and lives not only with King, but with Jesus, announcing with integrity, “The old law of an eye for an eye leaves everyone blind. It is immoral because it thrives on hatred rather than on love. It destroys community…Violence ends by defeating itself. It creates bitterness in the survivors and brutality in the destroyers.”
Today, let us remember Dr. King’s “weapon of love” through his vision, “I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, that rough places will be made straight and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed and all flesh shall see it together.”
So let it be!
“My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has regarded the low estate of his handmaiden. For behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed; for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name. And his mercy is on those who fear him from generation to generation. He has shown strength with his arm, he has scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts, he has put down the mighty from their thrones, and exalted those of low degree; he has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich he has sent empty away. He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy, as he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his posterity for ever.” –Luke 1:46-55