Friday, January 24, 2014

Prayer for MLK Birthday Celebration

Because I needed to attend a denominational meeting, I was unable to participate in the Duluth-area Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday Celebration Ecumenical Worship Service.  I was invited to share a prayer and this is the prayer I shared with those gathered.

Creating, Redeeming, Sustaining God, seeker of justice and pursuer of peace:  We gather this afternoon in memory and celebration.  We remember, today, your servant Martin, whose life was all too brief, but who, in his life, taught us something about justice, taught us something about changing the world, taught us something about the beloved community, taught us something about the beauty of each person, taught us something about the power of dreams, taught us something about the strength to love.  We celebrate the way his life continues to send ripples of faith, hope, love and courage into our world.
If all we do is remember, if all we do is celebrate, we miss an opportunity that your Spirit presents to us today, the opportunity to be moved and changed in our own lives.  May our remembering and celebrating lead to transformation.  Move us in the direction of that complete life that Martin preached about – a life where we love ourselves rightly, where we engage in action to help others, and where we orient ourselves to you, O God.  In Dr. King’s own words: when you get all three of these together, you can walk and not get weary.  You can look up and see the morning stars singing together, and the children of God shouting for joy.  When you get all of these working together in your very life, justice will roll down like waters, and righteousness like a mighty stream.

Transform us today O God, as we remember, as we celebrate.  Amen.