"I've decided that I'm going to do battle for my philosophy. You ought to believe something in life, believe that thing so fervently that you will stand up with it 'til the end of your days."
That's Martin Luther King Jr. speaking about his faith.
Yesterday I blogged about my own faith and later in the day as I reflected upon the post I wondered how many readers might be put off by this. Talking about a Higher Power is a deeply personal subject and not one that every person likes to explore or even hear about.
But Dr. King's words came to me this morning and they validated my efforts. How necessary it is to be true to oneself!
Now Dr. King believed so passionately in his God and his God's message of love and justice that he died for it. Am I willing to die for what I believe? Am I willing stand up for it until the end of my days?
The idea terrifies me. It goes right to the heart of my fear. But I am willing to say, "yes". If I have to, I will lay down my life for a truth that I believe in. Why? Because I would rather die than hide behind my fear. I am assured that there is great purpose in such action. Those who have done so have changed the world.
This brings to mind the suicide-bombers. Aren't they, too, doing as such? It could be argued that they are. But the message is hate and therefore unjustifiable and indefensible.
I do fear alienating some readers with talk of faith and Higher Guidance. I do want everyone to like me. I am a people-pleaser. But I'm learning to let go of caring what others think of me. I've learned there is little satisfaction in seeking approval from others. It's never enough and it brings me no peace.
Peace comes for me when I walk through that fear of being judged and I say, "This is what I believe. And I believe it with all of my heart. And you do not have to believe what I believe. We can believe different things. I will respect your beliefs and I ask that you respect mine."
Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated for his beliefs. His death was a knife to the heart of hope. But not if we carry on for him, not if we live out his message of Love and Justice. Not if we take a stand, challenge the fear and believe in something deeply enough that we, too, are willing to die for it.
Inspiring Message of the Day: I will continue to contemplate what it means to believe in something so deeply that I would die for it. I will continue to pray for the willingness to have that kind of courage.