Today is MLK Jr. Day. A year ago today I was volunteering and slicing bagels for a MLK conference at the local community college. I remember telling my fellow volunteers/coworkers about how I expected to be engaged soon. I remember being covered in crumbs and cream cheese and yet surrounded by such a peaceful and passionate crowd. I remember the speaker was powerful, honest, and poignant. I remember we are all a little baffled when a group of all-white performers went on stage to sing. I remember leaving to grab coffee and seeing a couple of ducks waddling across the road. I remembered watching the movie Selma that night with my boyfriend (soon to be fiance, now husband) and feeling like crying, screaming, and trying to change the world. I remember the whole day.
Maybe it was because I was an AmeriCorps volunteer. Maybe it was because it was right before I was engaged. Maybe it was because the speaker talked about considering taking her own life because of struggles she faced, and how she hopes for more for her children. Perhaps it was all of that together.
“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?”
– Martin Luther King Jr.
Do you believe that our God is big and strong enough to heal relationships? To counter injustice? To take imperfect people and give them a perfect plan?
Do you believe he can take our hearts that are rooted in floodplains, places of turbulence, and lemon trees, bitter and sour, and restore them? Take systemic injustices, and personal prejudices apart?
I do. Even today. When I need forgiveness. I rebelled against a perception of a “sweet” nature and decided to let the bitterness flow. If life gives you lemons you don’t have to make lemonade, but you should makes something. It doesn’t have to be sweet, it doesn’t have to be “approved” or “on schedule” or visible to the naked eye. Sometimes resilience is being ok with the unresolved.
I recently interviewed and accepted a new job working the front counter at a local dessert shop. I’m excited and nervous to try something new. It will be hard work, but I’ve never been afraid of that. Also, free cake.
I read in a article in “tips for living in small spaces” that if you have a fight with your spouse, to play a love song in your studio apartment. It’s hard to focus on the argument while embracing strong sentiments.
What if God is playing a love song for you, and you’ve been fighting against him. One of my former roommates told me that sometimes the moon is meant to be love poem for those who God knows look up at it. Have you breathed in the cold, smelled the rain, or let someone in front of you in line? Did you hear God’s melody underneath?
You cannot see but you’re inches away from the ledge
The canyons may call but don’t you dare listen to them
The earth, it may quake and your heart may break but know
I am where I stand and I will not let you go
-Phillip Larue, “Carry You.”