Pentecost – We Have A Dream
June 4, 2017
“I have a dream…”
These words of Martin Luther King spoken not far from here
still resonate over 50 years later.
“I have a dream I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident; that all men are created equal.”
I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.
I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.
I have a dream today,”
Martin Luther King Jr said.
King had a dream – Pentecost is about such dreams.
Our reading from the book of Acts says
that when the Holy Spirit is upon us,
we will dream – all of us will dream.
Sons and daughters,
Slaves and free,
Young men will see visions;
Old men will dream dreams.
King had a dream…a Holy Spirit dream to be sure!
So why is it that 53 years later,
On a weekend in May,
In Del Ray – a neighborhood of Alexandria –
Our neighborhood —
A series of racist flyers were posted on light poles and under windshields
on Commonwealth Avenue?
King had a dream…a Holy Spirit dream!
So why is it that cities and towns are just beginning to come to the grips with the fact that
our statues and streets named for Confederate leaders are harmful
and rewrite history to make it seem that these leaders were somehow on the right side?
King had a dream…a Holy Spirit dream…
So where is the oasis of freedom and justice?
Why are children still judged by the color of their skin?
Perhaps it’s because when King was dreaming,
many of the rest of us were still in deep sleep.
King was dreaming.
But the dream was his dream…his and that of a relative few.
It was his dream – and not yet our dream as Americans.
Even now, King would not be able to stand on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial,
and say, “We have a dream.”
The Holy Spirit is not yet done with his dream.
Pentecost is about the Holy Spirit breathing into us dreams and visions,
and one of the dreams our congregation has
is to help make King’s dream our dream.
We have a dream for racial justice.
And so our anti-racism team is educating ourselves…
We’re reading books by persons of color;
We’re visiting places like the Alexandria black history museum
And the Frederick Douglass house;
We’re learning about issues in our community which primarily affect persons of color here –
Things like affordable housing and public schools.
We want to be awakened to the Spirit’s dreaming.
We have other Holy Spirit dreams.