As I matured, my fascination for the [civil rights] movement did not change, although my emotional investment in the movement did. The images will never become easier to digest. But instead of seeing only the pain and horror as I did as a child, I grew to see the strength of a people guided by faith, who not only endured such great tragedy but who also emerged from it victorious.
As I matured, the images of the struggle became a point of sacred witness, and the necessity of passing down the story of the movement became paramount in my purpose. Over the years, I have been blessed not only to visit many of the historic sites of the movement but also to meet, to sit together, and to break bread with many leaders and foot soldiers of the movement. And I have sought to share all that they have shared with me, hoping that a new generation will know the faith of their forebears, and find the faith to overcome the challenges of our day.
—Michael W. Waters, Freestyle: Reflections on Faith, Family, Justice, and Pop Culture (Fresh Air Books, 2014)
Has your perspective on social justice changed since you were a child? In what ways? Join the conversation.
I will sing of the Lord’s loyal love forever. I will proclaim your faithfulness with my own mouth from one generation to the next.
—Psalm 89:1 (CEB)
Prayer for the Week
Help my generation rise to meet the challenges of our day with courage and integrity. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
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Through rich and moving stories of people from various faiths, author Frank Rogers Jr. shows ways to incorporate compassion in our daily lives. Start practicing compassion with Rogers in our Academy Recommends eCourse.
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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