“I have a dream..”
According to my diary, January 19th 2009 is Martin Luther King Jr day. In his famous speech at the Lincoln Memorial, he spoke of a dream which would secure equal opportunity for all, particularly the black Negroes of the Southern States of America. With the power of a prophet he emphasized the phrase “I have a dream.. I have a dream”. Eloquently he painted a picture of the transformation he sought, but never lived to see. His speech became a catalyst for change and the Civil Rights Act which followed. Forty-five years later, January 20th 2009 sees the inauguration of mixed-race President Barak Obama.
John Lennon in his song “Imagine” had a dream in which the “World would live as one..”, but his life too was ended abruptly by a bullet.
Like you, I too have a dream. I dream of a world in which:
Unborn children will be given the right to live regardless of physical or mental disability;
Children will live in safety in their homes and on the streets on which they live;
Young people will live in a society where they have the possibility education and employment;
Men and women will live free from the fear of abuse, both physical and verbal;
Teachers and police give and receive the respect that their profession deserves;
People with disabilities will be given full rights to occupation and recreation;
Sick people will have access to medical care on the basis of medical need not cost;
Elderly men and women will have sufficient income for secure retirement;
Prison inmates are treated with respect as fellow human beings;
The dying will be cared for in such a way that recognizes their full humanity;
Neighboring countries will live at peace with one another;
Planet earth will be treated with respect and responsible stewardship of her finite resources
Weapons of war will be turned into instruments of peace: swords into plough-shares;
2000 years ago Jesus of Nazareth had a dream of uniting Jew and Gentile into one Church. Former divisions would be abolished in the kingdom that bears His name. He promised to pour out His Spirit on all regardless of gender, age or social standing. He confirmed that every man, woman and child is a person for whom He willingly died on the cross. He does not want anyone to perish, but everyone to repent and be saved.
The Gospel of Christ is Good News because it is an inclusive Gospel. Jesus' final command was that disciples should be made of all nations, beginning at Jerusalem, Judea and the Samaria and on out to the rest of the world. Pentecost saw this becoming a reality.
John the apostle had a dream, a vision of what Heaven would look like peopled by those from every tongue and tribe, people and nation. All will be united in one purpose for the whole of eternity, occupied in worshiping Him that sits upon the throne, and Jesus, the lamb that was slain.
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