I’ve been to the mountaintop

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Those who would withhold justice and freedom for some, threaten justice and freedom for all.

We mean business now and we are determined to gain our rightful place in God’s world. (Yeah) [Applause] And that’s all this whole thing is about. We aren’t engaged in any negative protest and in any negative arguments with anybody. We are saying that we are determined to be men. We are determined to be people. (Yeah) We are saying [Applause], we are saying that we are God’s children. (Yeah) [Applause] And if we are God’s children, we don’t have to live like we are forced to live.

“I’ve Been to the Mountaintop” is the popular name of the last speech delivered by Martin Luther King Jr. King spoke on April 3, 1968, at the Mason Temple in Memphis, Tennessee. On the following day, King was assassinated.
There are moments captured by photography that cause time to stand still. The Marines raising the flag on Mt. Suribachi, the Berlin Wall coming down, the twin towers on that fall day in September…..
This photo taken outside the Montgomery courthouse March 17 1965 is one of those times for me. In a few short years Dr. King would be dead and the rise of black militancy, and white supremacists would replace “the dream” with the negative protests and negative arguments Dr. King spoke against. We have yet to recover from the damage Dr. Kings death brought.
But on that day Rev. Abernathy, James Foreman, Dr. King, Jesse Douglas Sr., and John Lewis stood resolute, courageously, against all that would deny them the right to be free people. Free from injustice, free to pursue the promise of life, liberty, happiness our founders even though flawed themselves envisioned for all citizens of our nation.
A fellow blogger wrote this “We need to die to self to recapture the heart of God for others. It is what He did for us”.
She is correct. Until we are able to love others like ourselves racism, prejudice, injustice and hatred will always find a home. It is up to each of us as followers if Christ to be willing to do so.
Dr. King had a dream that I and many others share. The following are excerpts from his speech given on August 8th 1963 in Washington D.C.
I say to you today, my friends [applause], so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow (Uh-huh), I still have a dream. (Yes) It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream. (Yes)
I have a dream (Mhm) that one day (Yes) this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed (Hah): “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.”
I have a dream that the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.
That one day right there in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers. I have a dream today.
Amen
All excerpts from “I’ve been to the mountaintop” and “I have a dream” are copyrighted MLKEC-INP, Martin Luther King, Jr. Estate Collection, In Private Hands
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About HCliffCraig.com

“Now at last they were beginning chapter One of the great story no one on earth has read: which goes on forever”. I love this line at the end of the Last Battle by C.S. Lewis. Everyone has a story to tell and ultimately we are all part of a greater story that someday will be revealed in full. “ For now, we can only see a dim and blurry picture of things”. ( 1 Corinthians 13:12). My story is not remarkable, although the events I have had the privilege in my life to witness have been. I grew up in the south “the land of cotton” and the old times there were definitely not forgotten. I remember where I was and what I was doing when JFK and Martin Luther King were murdered in Dallas and in Memphis. I remember the Civil Rights movement, a time of great unrest and change. I remember the dawning of the “Age of Aquarius” in the late 1960’s. It was also the dawning of my love for playing music, a love that has stayed with me throughout my life. If my life were chapters in a book one would tell of my precious bride of 20+ years who endured so much and stood beside me through the good and the bad. One would describe the blessings of being a father and a grandfather. One would tell about how despite being “the wretch” the song sings about God was able to change me, and use me to make a difference in others lives, make me a servant in His church, and surround me with friends all because of His goodness. All part of a story that has had many twists and turns. I think of the words Jimmy Buffet wrote in one of my favorite songs "As a dreamer of dreams and a travelin’ man I have chalked up many a mile Read dozens of books about heroes and crooks And I learned much from both of their styles" And so it is true for me. But in all of my travels and all I have read and experienced nothing compares to where I am headed. The place where my story here ends and the story that goes on forever begins! "" I am confident that He who began a good work in you will carry it on until completion until the day He returns". Philippians 1:6 My hope is that as we all run our race that in some small way my words will encourage and speak to you, as your story is being written. And draw you ever closer to the One who loves you. Further up and further in!
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