via — Hope For Today
By refusing to give up her seat to a white man on a Montgomery, Alabama, city bus in 1955, black seamstress Rosa Parks (1913—2005) helped initiate the civil rights movement in the United States. The leaders of the local black community organized a bus boycott that began the day Parks was convicted of violating the segregation laws. Led by a young Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the boycott lasted more than a year—during which Parks not coincidentally lost her job—and ended only when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that bus segregation was unconstitutional. Over the next half-century, Parks became a nationally recognized symbol of dignity and strength in the struggle to end entrenched racial segregation. (Source: Black History, The History Channel)
We as Americans today need to learn from leaders like Dr. Martin Luther King and citizens like Rosa Parks. Rosa Parks taught us there is a right way to make our voices heard and to stand up for what we believe and for our rights as citizens-a way where the rights and welfare of others is respected and dignity is preserved. It is a way without hate speech and violence. Yet, so many choose the way of hatred and destruction, never considering the rights, feelings, or needs of others who may disagree but who certainly have the same human rights as themselves.
What has our nation become? Have we as a people forgotten the values our founding fathers and Christian leaders have laid down for and taught us? Have we lost our dignity and all respect for our fellow citizens? We, as Americans, need to earnestly PRAY for God’s mercy, forgiveness, wisdom, and guidance in the days ahead. Let us look to and learn from the lives of those who have stood for the rights of citizens and have done so without hate-filled speech and violent demonstrations. Let us pursue our causes with loving hearts and with Almighty God as our guide and remember the sacrifices of the brave men and women who risk their lives every day for our freedoms and protection. There is a better way!
Zacheriah 7:9: “Thus says the Lord of hosts, Render true judgments, show kindness and mercy to one another.”
Isaiah 1:17: “Learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression; bring justice to the fatherless, plead the widow’s cause.”
Micah 6:8: “He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?”
2 Samuel 8:15: “So David reigned over all Israel. And David administered justice and equity to all his people.”
A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. 38 Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?”
39 He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.
40 He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?”
41 They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”
During difficult times in our lives, when we are tossed about by the winds of adversity, our hearts flooded by torrents of pain, or parched from the heat of intense trials…during those times, in our desperation, we have need of a strength that is beyond our own. We need a calm, a peace, that passes our own understanding. We seek out One who is wiser, greater, stronger than we…because what we need during those times can only be found by looking into the heart of our Creator.
Jeremiah 17:7-8: “But blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him. He will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.”
Draw near to the LORD, seek Him in your heart and through His Word. Become rooted and grounded in His love. And you will flourish, though everything around you may be raging like a storm or withering as though from drought. You will be established in Christ…and in HIM, you will find the strength to stand strong!
God’s Strength & Peace to You Today,