After 25 years, there is very little that I can remember about my high school classes. I remember friends (though sometimes not their names…) and I remember some of my teachers but most of what went on day to day in class has been lost forever in the abyss, especially anything I learned in any of my math classes!
I remember my high school speech class a lot. I loved that class. I wasn’t too crazy about my teacher, but I loved the class!
I hope I never forget the day my teacher played a record (YES…a record, not an 8-track, not a cassette, not a CD!) of a very famous speech and we were supposed to “critique” it. Sounds like a great exercise for high school students, huh? I often have wondered what the objective was because we were too young, too inexperienced… essentially too stupid to know a good speech from a poor speech but there we were in a high school class listening to this LP.
When the speaker began, I was enthralled. He had a commanding voice and spoke with conviction and hope. If I had ever heard this speech before, I had forgotten it. This is the time I first remember hearing “I have a dream… I have a dream…. I have a dream…. I have a dream today! Let freedom ring… Let freedom ring… Let freedom ring!”
I remember thinking “there is NO way I can critique this!” If my memory serves me well, most of the class sat dazed while our teacher critiqued for us and waxed poetically on the merits of this speech above all others.
Today, the United States, honors the memory of that speaker, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. There will be those who will argue that he was the greatest man who ever lived. There will be others who will argue that he was a hypocrite and there will be many who will fall somewhere between in their personal beliefs of MLK Jr.
Honestly, I really don’t care how people feel about MLK Jr. He was mortal, just as I am. He was a sinner, just as I am. He had hope for his people, though and that is what I want to have. I don’t want to give into the doomsday reports that world is going to end in 2012, or that the tribulation is beginning, or that armies are preparing for Armageddon, or that Christians will soon loose their freedoms in America. Instead, I want to have hope…hope like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr had in the midst of riots, beatings, lynchings, arrests, threats, fear, and anger.
I don’t know about MLK Jr’s personal relationship with Jesus Christ. However, it seems to me that his hope rested with God. He had hope that God would some day set things right.
I know where I stand with Jesus Christ and I know that someday He will come back and set this world straight. I can’t wait! Until then, I will cling to hope because I know that greater is He that is in me than He that is in the world (1 John 4:4).