Martin Luther King, Jr. had a dream. On this day we remember him, I ponder the words from his famous “I Have a Dream” speech.
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.
~ Martin Luther King, Jr.
This popular line from Dr. King’s speech sticks in my mind. It reminds me of the longing woven into the fabric of our being—the longing for—
To be accepted just as we are. To be known and deeply loved. To belong. To live in a world of harmony where diversity is celebrated rather than squashed.
One time during my college days, I was sitting on a bus on my way home from school and a young guy sitting across from me asked if I was Persian. Just out of the blue, he wanted to know my ethnicity. I’m not sure what his intentions were, but it was an interesting conversation starter to say the least.
People often wonder “what I am” because of my dark hair, olive skin, and hazel eyes. So for all those who are curious…I’m a mix of Peruvian, Spanish, English, Irish, Welsh, and Swedish.
But who I really am is a child of God. I’m a daughter of the King of kings.
And I have a dream, too.
A dream to help people discover their true worth in the Lord. A dream to see captives set free. A dream to minister to women who struggle to accept the woman in the mirror.
They are dreams born out of my personal story. They are God’s dreams for me, and only He can take our deepest pain and turn it into something beautiful for the glory of His Kingdom.
He’s put a passion in me so deep, that even as a writer, it’s hard for me to describe this passion in words. I imagine it’s the sort of passion that propelled Dr. King to be a voice for racial equality. He stood up for the beating passion of his heart and He did it in love.
Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that. ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.
We can choose to love and be the positive change our world needs. We can choose to love and be a voice for the voiceless. We can choose to love and appreciate the diversity of skin color, hair color, body type…
Because what it really comes down to is that we are God’s kids, fearfully and wonderfully made in His image—woven beautiful—and we each have something uniquely wonderful to offer this world. Our God-given uniqueness from the inside out, is meant to be a gift.
I ponder those words again……not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.
In a world that focuses so much on outward appearances, how do we not get stuck there?
Maybe it starts with us understanding how richly loved we are by the One who made us. He accepts us, despite our flaws. And in Christ, we are made new — we are altogether lovely in His eyes. And so because He first loved us, so can we.
We can love.
We can hang out with people who look different than us. We can be authentic rather than fake. We can give someone the gift of our time, of getting to know them beyond the outer shell. We can ask God to help us see people in the way He does.
I long for that day when all God’s people will live in perfect harmony. When divisions will be no more and the tune of freedom will forever play. But we can make a difference right now in this moment. One person at a time, we can make a difference.
I have a dream…