Listening to a stirring speech from Rev. Tanya Tyler at the Disciples for the Dream service last night, I thought of how the Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King is often referred to as Dr. King, but rarely, if ever, Rev. King. As a culture, it appears that we respect the academic accomplishment more than the mantle of ordination. Yet it was his faith and his relationship with the church that both fueled and sustained his work, providing a source of community and network of support.
Martin Luther King embodied the ideal of an intellectual, spiritual, and activist life coming together in a single, extraordinary individual. Not every person can bring the strength in each of these three areas that he did. But we can join with others to form the beloved community, where together we value clear thinking, deep connection, and heartfelt service. In a community where myriad gifts can find expression, we gain strength from each other. Strength enough to change the world.