I dream a world where all
Will know sweet freedom's way,
Where greed no longer saps the soul
Nor avarice blights our day.
A world I dream where black or white,
Whatever race you be,
Will share the bounties of the earth
And every person is free,
Where wretchedness will hang its head
And joy, like a pearl,
Attends the needs of all mankind—
Of such I dream, my world!
from "I Dream A World," by Langston Hughes
The time is coming, declares the Lord, when I will raise up a righteous descendant from David’s line, and he will rule as a wise king. He will do what is just and right in the land. During his lifetime, Judah will be saved and Israel will live in safety. And his name will be The Lord Is Our Righteousness.
I recently moved to New York City, where my wife is finishing her last year of seminary. As a history nerd, I’ve loved exploring all the important sites and monuments the City has to offer. Times Square is overwhelming, the museums are beautiful, and Central Park is an oasis within the City. There are also monuments that I wish weren’t there, but they deserve to be seen nonetheless.
One of these is the African Burial Ground National Monument. The site contains the remains of more than 419 Africans. It is a portion of what was the largest cemetery for people of African descent, some free, most enslaved. Historians estimate there may have been 15,000–20,000 burials there.
No matter the religion of those buried at this hallowed ground, I believe they had hope in a better future for themselves. Jeremiah tells us today that the time of the messiah is coming, that peace and safety are on the way. Peace and safety for all of God’s children — that sure does sound nice.
Lord, I pray for all those who await your coming in glory. For those who need a change. For those who have lost hope. Amen.
The arc of the moral universe is long but it bends toward justice.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.