Posted by Moira Ahearne Parkinson

Welcome to Summer Mid-Week E-Lift —


“For His lovingkindness is great toward us, and the truth of the Lord is everlasting.”
Psalm 117:2
Listen and Watch: Frozen Silence, by Cherish

Today we pause and reflect on the 50th anniversary of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream Speech,” at the Lincoln Memorial. Rev. King lived his life striving to follow the vision of a Beloved Community founded on the biblical principles of justice, mercy, lovingkindness and forgiveness. His vision remains powerful after so many years because it is rooted in sacred truth. It is the same vision of the kingdom of Heaven that Jesus taught us to daily seek, and indeed, discover within ourselves. We are children of God, all of us.

We have reflected on the power of kindness the last few weeks. Kindness is within all our grasp, and it unlocks the door to our souls. Our daily doses of practicing kindness can inoculate us from the hatred, apathy, prejudice, and meanness that threaten to tear us apart.

Over vacation we watched the movie, “42,” depicting the first racial integration of professional baseball when Jackie Robinson was recruited for the Brooklyn Dodgers, back in 1947. Death threats and protests poured in. Robinson was heckled mercilessly. Even members of his team circulated a petition to have him removed. The captain of the team, Pee Wee Reese, responded differently. He refused to sign the petition. One game, when the heckling was particularly bad (some say it was in Cincinnati, others say Boston), Reese walked over to Robinson and stood by him and stared down the hecklers. And the heckling stopped.

It was a true, pure act of kindness. It made change possible. Kindness does that. It can thaw a heart, covert a sinner, bring hope to the despairing, shed light to a dark path. A kind heart can illumine the way for the mercy and justice of God. Even alter the course of history.

It is our choice. Will we practice kindness?

So as we enter a new season, let us continue the dream. A dream that we can be kind to one another, in the little ways and the big ways — believing that our drops of relentless kindness will converge and create such a torrent that it will make a difference — so true freedom, based in the righteousness of God, will ring.

Pray: “Lord, show me where to be kind today — let me be kind.”