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Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.


Today we honor Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  Dr. King was a man who believed in peace and worked hard for equality for all. His civil rights movement began one summer in 1935 when he was 6 years old. Two of his friends did not show up to play ball with him and he choose to go look for them. When he went to one boys’ house, their mother met him at the door and told him, rudely, that her son would not be coming out to play with him that day or any day …her son was white.

Of course, that was not the last time King experienced discrimination. Because of his intelligence and his determination to excel, King was able to skip the 9th and 12th grades. He excelled in public speaking, surprise!

One evening after taking top prize in a debate tournament, he and his teacher were riding home on the bus discussing the event when the driver ordered them to give up their seats for two white passengers who had just boarded.

King was infuriated and wanted to remain seated in protest, but his teacher convinced him to obey the law and they stood for the remainder of the 90-mile trip.

King later recalled, “That night will never leave my memory as long as I live. It was the angriest I had ever been in my life. Never before or afterward, can I remember myself being so angry.”

And, later, we know he helped with the bus boycott that Rosa Parks instigated when she refused to give up her seat in 1955.

We all know most of Dr. King’s life story. How he went from Baptist minister and activist to become the most visible spokesperson and leader in the civil rights movement from 1955 until his assassination in 1968. King is best known for advancing civil rights through nonviolence and civil disobedience, inspired by his Christian beliefs and the nonviolent activism of Mahatma Gandhi.

So, educated minds want to know, what do you think Dr. King would think of the happenings on Wednesday, a week ago, when our Capital was sieged by followers of President Trump?

I’m curious….

King was a man of peace. He encountered violence during some protests, but not started by the ‘peaceful’ marchers themselves. We can recall the late Rep. Lewis’ encounter with police on a peaceful march where he was struck in the head and thus experienced a serious concussion.

Obviously, I would venture to say that Dr. King would speak adamantly against the violence and the insurgency of the rioters.

I suspect he would agree with Rosemary Fillmore Rheas’ ideas on angry people: “The world has been changed for the better by men and women who have been angry, angry about life conditions, prejudices, bigotries, the seeming inequalities of life. They turned their anger into creative energy and vaccines were discovered. Laws were passed, philosophies were born, schools and charities were established, books were written, and symphonies were composed.”

The key point being “they turned their anger”, not that they brought their anger with them into those fields of creativity but that they turned it into creativity.

Unfortunately, the anger and frustration on that fateful Wednesday was only encouraged into rage instead of peaceful creativity.

One of Dr. King’s books is entitled, “Where do we go from here: Chaos or Community”. One of the central themes is hope.

We spoke of hope last week. The Metaphysical meaning of hope from the Revealing Word-Hope is the expectation of good in the future. It is a quality (good as far as it goes) of sense mind because it is subject to time.

Just as we were seeing hope for the pandemic, we must face that the division in our country is even deeper and possibly, wider.

If our country wishes to move forward from what has recently been a series of challenges to our health, our welfare and our democracy, we need hope, and so much more. We need to ask the citizens of our great country to “turn their anger” to creative ways for all people to be free and equal in all ways.

The very principle of One Presence and One Power is premised on equality and social justice. Spirituality cannot be separated from politics.

If we believe in our Principles and LIVE THEM, then we must…we MUST find what is ours to do’ and then step out and up and do it.

Our country needs people with vision on ALL levels to take their gifts and place them as the hands and feet of the God of their understanding and walk it.

Dr. Gary Simmons tells us, “Your soul is a force within you that seeks to push you toward ever-increasing levels of spiritual growth and personal integrity.

Resistance to this pressure produces discomfort, stress, and ultimately the storms of your life.”

I’m guessing some of the storms we are seeing, and feeling are from that resistance.

But if we recall the words of 7 or 9 from Star Trek, “Resistance is futile.”

Or from our Unity history, “What you resist, persists.”

Much better to get into the flow of our Source, connect with the Higher Self within you and when you do, you will know what is yours to do.

People, it does not have to be on the level of the President or Governor. It starts here, in our homes, in our communities.

Look at the ways you can, first, connect with YOUR higher self…prayer, meditation, contemplation, connection with people of your same ideals.

Then look to your household…. how can you aid in the peace within your home, more togetherness, more understanding, more compassion…brings more peace.

Then take that to your communities. Where can you aid in bringing peace to your community? We have outreach. We have our quarterly roadside clean-up. We have Sunday Services with music and Message. We have weekly Meditations on Mondays at 6:30 PM.

We have classes scheduled, both Unity Basics and Lessons in Truth. We have a weekly email send to you with information and inspiration, thank you Connie.

Our Prayer Chaplains and Board members are reaching out to you, staying connected, letting you know that Unity of Coastal Delaware is still here, and we are strong.

And in this Pandemic, we are a community that is doing our part to stop it by following guidelines…wearing a mask when required, keeping distance when necessary, washing our hands and using sanitizer as needed and now…getting the vaccine.

We all do our part, in a nonviolent way. Dr. King would be proud of our community.

One last mention of Rev. Dr. King…his birthday didn’t become a federal holiday until 1986, nearly 20 years after it was introduced to Congress, per the King Center. Even then, it faced an upward battle for all states to recognize the holiday, only getting nationally recognized in 2000.

To this day, it collides in Alabama and Mississippi with Robert E. Lee Day, which honors the Confederate general.

This was the first holiday around a national figure who is not a president, and who is African American. Many in Congress did not want to recognize an African American that was thought of as a troublemaker by some in his day.”

Nov. 3, 1983, President Ronald Reagan signed a bill marking the third Monday of January, as Martin Luther King Jr. Day, according to the center. The holiday was to begin in 1986. 

In January 1986, the first national Martin Luther King Jr. holiday was observed. It took a while, but we honor this great man today.


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