Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was such a visionary. The older I get, the more I appreciate not only his wisdom, but his love for God.
You see, the greatest commandment Jesus gave us was to love His Father, and love others. “Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” - Matthew 22:37-40 (NIV)
We are supposed to love God and love others, period.
I wonder what Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. would think of the way we, as a society, behave, today? I think he would be so disappointed in us.
If you have read/followed my page for a while, you know my background. I was in politics. A Republican campaign consultant and fundraiser for years. When I was in college, my dream was to become an Ambassador; possibly to one of the Spanish-speaking countries; putting to work my parents’ hard earned money for my desired double major of Spanish and International Relations and my minor in Political Science. So when I talk about politics, I am not basing my opinion solely on Fox News or CNN. I am speaking from experience.
I say all of this to emphasize the point … we are missing our mark.
We are getting this all wrong. All of us; Republicans, Democrats, Independents, Socialists, Conservatives, Liberals; however you identify yourself … we as a country are getting it wrong.
Remember Dr. King’s words, “Our lives begin to end when we become silent about things that matter?” I worry we have done just that; we have fallen silent to the things that matter and become loud (far too loud) about insignificant things.
This is not about my feelings toward President Trump, nor is it about my feelings toward Senator Schumer or Representative Pelosi; none of whom would be on my desired list of politicians to have over, for dinner; but I digress.
This is about us. American citizens who need to be more compassionate toward one another. This is about us; American citizens who need to be vocal about the things that matter, and not only be vocal about them, but do something. All of us need to compromise and help … and love. Using our voices for good during this shutdown would be a great start.
What about the family who works for the Coast Guard, but has not been paid due to the Government Shutdown? What about the 800,000 workers who will be fired if they do not show up for work, even though they are not being paid? Can’t we put aside partisan arguments to compromise and demand a solution to end this longest-ever Government Shutdown? Can’t we do it with grace and dignity and without finger-pointing and name calling?
As I type these very words, I realize what Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. would likely say to me if he were sitting across the table while I write this. He would tell me, “Aimee, those are exactly the politicians you should have on your desired list for dinner. You know why? Because as one of your favorite Presidents once said, ‘All great change in America begins at the dinner table.’ (Ronald Reagan). Aimee, you are part of the problem. Your obstinance towards those specific politicians is what contributes to being silent about the things that matter.”
Okay, so maybe I need to visit someone about my imaginary conversations with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. But I truly believe he would tell me I was wrong for not wanting to invite those three over for dinner, due to my disagreeing with each of them.
You see, we need to not be so combative in our political discussions; we need to be vocal, yes, and not fall silent … but we need to have more compassion and less combative in our tones.
Overall, we need to have more love. We need to all desire to become Ambassadors, but instead of my college girl dream; we need to all be Ambassadors for the Kingdom. We need to represent Papa’s forever home and His love, in everything we do.
If we truly love God the Father, then we will truly love those around us, and we will extend the olive branches to them. We will show up in the uncomfortable places in life, with love. We will listen to those we oppose, with love. We will disagree kindly, and with love. We will offer compromise, with love.
Extending this love and grace to people who do not deserve it has nothing to do with them, but it has everything to do with love. And as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. so beautifully said, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.”
In honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. today, we take it a step further … because we honor God.
Let’s love hard on people today and every day; not only saying, “even those” with whom we disagree, but instead let’s say, “especially those,” with whom we disagree. Hold me accountable, okay? Because I know it isn’t easy and I don’t do this very well. But I can sure try harder, every single day.