The Daily Prayer
SATURDAY, April 4, 2020
Martin Luther King Jr. (1929—1968)
Martin Luther King Jr. was a black American preacher who became a civil rights leader, teaching nonviolent resistance to evil, and opposing racism and segregation. Working out of his home in the church, King organized a diverse coalition of people to combat the evils of racism, poverty, and militarism. In many ways, he was a flawed hero, but he was a committed man who died for his faith and for the freedom of his people. It was while he was advocating for sanitation workers that he was killed in Memphis, Tennessee, on April 4, 1968.
Martin Luther King Jr. reflected in a sermon, “Every now and then I think about my own death, and I think about my own funeral. Every now and then I ask myself, ‘What is it that I want said?’ I’d like somebody to mention that day, that Martin Luther King Jr. tried to give his life serving others. I’d like for somebody to say that day, that Martin Luther King Jr. tried to love somebody. I want you to say that day, that I tried to be right on the war question. I want you to be able to say that day, that I did try to feed the hungry. And I want you to be able to say that day, that I did try, in my life, to clothe those who were naked. I want you to say, on that day, that I did try, in my life, to visit those who were in prison. I want you to say that I tried to love and serve humanity.”
We give thanks today for our brother Martin and for the ways you spoke through him to expose the poverty of our wealth, the insecurity of our war-making, and the contradictions of our racism. Give us grace to love you among the least today, O Lord, and to live the good news Martin preached in his life and in his death. Amen.