The speeches are over. It’s back to work. The country paused to commemorate Martin Luther King. His son, Martin Luther King III said it best, “My father was a great man. My hero. A hero to many. But sometimes there is too much emphasis placed on Martin Luther King Jr. the idol instead of the ideals.”
What of those ideals? They echoed the answer Jesus gave the lawyer who asked the Master about the greatest commandment (Matthew chapter 22, King James version). Jesus’ answer was, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.”
In her work, Science and Health, Mary Baker Eddy states, “The rich is spirit help the poor in one grand brotherhood, all have the same Principle, or Father; and bless is that man who seethe his brother’s need and supplieth it, seeking his own in another’s good.”
There’s a progression here: dream to prayer to action. Dr. King saw it and a nation acted. But laws are only effective as they are embraced in the hearts of the people. Issues like healthcare, housing, taxes, employment, to name a few. Events like the shooting is Tucson, floods in Australia, earthquakes, political unrest and civil strife cross the lines of sex, race, politics or religion.
I have found that prayer is the surest foundation for action. In my prayer, I consider the guidance given by Eddy, “The test of all prayer lies in the answer to these questions:
~Do we love our neighbor better because of this asking?
~Do we pursue the old selfishness, satisfied with having prayed for something better, though we give no evidence of the sincerity of our requests by living consistently with our prayer?
~If selfishness has given place to kindness, we shall regard our neighbor unselfishly, and bless them that suers us; but we shall never meet this great dry simply by asking that it may be done.”
One random act of kindness, doesn’t get the job done! It is a moment to moment commitment to action that brings lasting change. By finding the common good we experience the greater good. I’m in, how about you?