HOW CLOSE ARE WE TO THE DREAM?

How close are we to Dr. King's Dream? As the Church? As a culture? As individuals?

As I sit and prepare for the inaugural Better Days show this upcoming Sunday, and Rev. Dr. King's Holiday, I can't help but ponder the question, "How close have we really come to realizing the Dream? Has the church where Dr. King launched his mission helped to get us closer? Has our culture come close? What about you? Are you "Free at Last?"

The “I Have A Dream Speech”, challenged the consciousness of the majority in America to take a long look in the mirror -- a really long look: “But one hundred years later, the Negro still is not free. One hundred years later, the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination. One hundred years later, the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity. One hundred years later, the Negro is still languished in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land. And so we've come here today to dramatize a shameful condition. In a sense we've come to our Nation's Capital to cash a check.”

This is why I love this speech and have loved it since my 6th grade teacher challenged my classmates and me to listen to it - really listen. Dr. King lived in the middle of a nightmare yet dared to dream of better days – a world that accepted him as a man and not anything less than one. This speech challenges to dream of the best: the best world and the best you and me we can be. However, I am quite saddened by the sounds that came from the black and white television images from the past still echoing into the high definition flat screens of today.

"I AM A Man!"

A man that was reared in church, and got his calling from God to spread the Gospel message to a dying world and the same man that got his calling from God to spread the message of hope to a dying Nation putting his people through hell. What do we see when we look in the mirror of our churches today? Are we only judging people by the content of their character or by the clothes on their back, the degrees behind their names or their gender? Are women still used like handmaidens to do the real work of the church while being denied the highest positions in the church?

America! What do you look like in the mirror today? Blacks may be able to buy in the suburbs and become the POTUS, but still are devalued by the society as a whole! The moral fabric of our Nation 50 years later has unraveled and left us uncovered in many ways -- exposing our shame making us even more vulnerable to our enemies.

From the tragedy of 911 to the Black Lives Matter movement. 50 years later we are still protesting and marching for justice. When will the marching end? Can it end? I believe it ends with you and me.

Are you "Free at Last?" Are you still marching around the same mountain of protest against your dreams for your life? I challenge you to, "Come out from amongst them!" breaking the cycle of continuing to do the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Take one step today toward freedom. Plan an incredible life -- writing it down. Jer. 29:11 says, for I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts of good and not of evil to give you a future and a hope." So if God Himself has big plans and dreams for you and I who are we to circumvent the dream? Plan BIG and take one step towards fulfilling the dream today. Apply for college, for the business loan, forgive, let go and embrace. Take just one step and watch tomorrow become a Better Day!

Reverend Thea

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