Midweek Message, January 16, 2019

If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. Matthew 5:39
As I stood inside the Martin Luther King, Jr. Center in Atlanta, I gazed at an exhibit of the travel bag Dr. King had used on his fatal trip to Memphis. Inside the bag were two books. The one on top was entitled Strength to Love. It reminded me of his audacious belief that loving one’s enemies, not violence, held the power to transform society. Was he right? I wondered. Could simply acting in love in the face of hostility really make a difference? Mrs. King was once asked that question after Dr. King’s death. “Let me tell you a story,” she replied. “One January night in 1956 while Martin was away, I sat home with our baby. Suddenly there was a thunderous blast. A bomb had been tossed onto the front porch. The baby and I were unharmed, but an angry crowd of our friends, wanting revenge, had gathered around the house when Martin got home. “It was the first test of his theory,” she continued. “Martin hushed the crowd and said, ‘I want you to go home and put down your weapons. We must meet violence with nonviolence. We must meet hate with love.’” “What happened?” the interviewer asked. “The anger melted and the crowd faded into the night,” she said with a smile. “You see, the power of love is a mighty force.”   Lord, as we prepare to celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Birthday—and every day—give me the strength to love even when I am wronged. Amen.
CHURCH NEWS: Women’s Seminar is January 26, Sign up now! Join us in marching in the MLK, Jr Parade on January 21. Call the church for more details.

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