I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.” — Martin Luther King, Jr.
Today we celebrate the life of Martin Luther King. The words of his “I Have a Dream” speech are etched deeply into the annals of this nation’s history. He had a dream for which he worked tirelessly day in, day out, in the face of great adversity. He would not take no for an answer. He would not stop. His dream cost him his life.
Do you have a dream today? When you woke this morning and put your feet on the floor, was there a dream, a passion, singing inside you so loudly that you could not help but plunge into your day and move closer to fulfilling that dream? Think about it.
I am asking myself this question as well. It is so easy to get caught up in the humdrum rote of our day-to-day activities, in which we sleepwalk our way through the motions of living. We follow the same routine as we get ready for work; we drive the same route on the way there and back; we think the same thoughts, listen to the evening news, go to bed, and rise tomorrow to do the very same things. Maybe we once had a dream but the challenges of life, the ups and downs and turn around’s have jaded us, caused us to believe that this is as good as it gets, so just be thankful for what we have. There is nothing wrong with that philosophy — if you choose to follow it.
But what if there is a chance — just the tiniest glimmer of hope — that your long-buried dream could see the light of day? Ah, but you’re older now. New ways of doing things don’t come as easily as they once did. And you’re so busy. Doing something else seems overwhelming even to think about. But look! You are older now and so much wiser, yes? And ponder this: how much of your busyness is no more than just killing time.
Did you hear that? Killing time. Killing it instead of savoring it?
Wow! What kind of rut have we fallen into, spending endless hours in front of the TV being bombarded with bad news and drug company ploys to cure what ails us (or what might ail us if we spend a little time thinking about it). “Ask your doctor if our magic potion is right for you.” We play games online and troll Facebook looking for something, anything to catch our attention and make us feel something. Can’t we spare a little of that time to sit with our soul and listen? That old dream, or even a new one, might poke its head up through the fertile soil of silence and attention. A dream may be resting just beneath the surface of our overloaded mind just waiting for a chance to emerge.
I have a dream.
I have a dream that yes, we will come together as brothers and sisters, beloved folks who genuinely care about one another and let nothing — politics, religion, race, gender, sexual orientation, social or financial status, NOT ONE THING — stand in the way of that.
I have a dream that as we will learn to care for one another, we will go a step further and learn to care for ourselves — to treat our precious bodies and minds with kindness and tenderness and make healthier choices each day.
And I have a dream that each of us will take the time to sit quietly and dust off that dream of ours. The world is waiting for us. Each of us has something to offer which no one else can share in the exact same way we do.
Shh, be still and listen, then let your light shine.
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