Tuesday, January 15, 2008


" . . . even a little of true nonviolence acts in a silent, subtle, unseen way and leavens the whole society." (Mahatma Gandhi)

It was on DECEMBER 1, 1955, that Rosa Parks, a 42-year-old member of the African Methodist Episcopal Church and the NAACP, refused to give up her seat at the front of a bus to a white passenger in Montgomery, Alabama. On JANUARY 27, 1956, Martin Luther King, Jr, a 27-year-old Baptist minister, one of the leaders of the ensuing Montgomery Bus Boycott, had this experience:

"I was ready to give up. With my cup of coffee sitting untouched before me, I tried to think of a way to move out of the picture without appearing a coward. In this state of exhaustion, when my courage had all but gone, I decided to take my problem to God. With my head in my hands, I bowed over the kitchen table and prayed aloud.

The words I spoke to God that midnight are still vivid in my memory. "I am here taking a stand for what I believe is right. But now I am afraid. The people are looking to me for leadership, and if I stand before them without strength and courage, they too will falter. I am at the end of my powers. I have nothing left. I've come to the point where I can't face it alone."

At that moment, I experienced the presence of the Divine as I had never experienced God before. It seemed as though I could hear the quiet assurance of an inner voice saying: "Stand up for justice, stand up for truth; and God will be at your side forever." Almost at once my fears began to go. My uncertainty disappeared. I was ready to face anything."

(from Stride Toward Freedom: The Montgomery Story)

Martin Luther King, Jr, would have been 79 years old today. Imagine.

A Civil Rights Timeline


The Solitary Walker said...

This is a truly inspirational post. Thank you.

The Dream said...

I just KNEW you would post something to commemorate this day. Awesome! How amazing to be able to go with God - without reservation.

Dawn said...

Thank you, a great reminder of what we are missing. Being brave is never easy.

robin andrea said...

I will never forget 1968, what was robbed from us that year can never be fully grasped. Our nation still suffers. Thanks for remembering.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful story. I hadn't heard it before. Thank you. tarakuanyin

Dale said...


1968 has been much on my mind, these past few weeks.

Thank you.