Words to live by from Martin Luther King

martin luther kingMartin Luther King, Jr. was an American pastor, activist, humanitarian and leader in the Civil Rights Movement who was assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee on April 4, 1968.

He won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964.

This past Monday in the U.S. commemorated his life and Facebook was full of quotes from him.

Frankly, I hadn’t heard many of them before, and they are very inspiring.

If you subscribe to my blog, and received my thank-you gift of “What Lies Within You; Inspirational Quotes to Lift Your Spirits”, you know I am passionate about inspiring quotes.

Often just a few well-phrased words can be deep with meaning and advice.

We can never get too much inspiration, so I felt a post filled with his words would both honor Dr. King and be the best inspiration I could give my readers this week:

I heartedly encourage you to take some of these words into your heart as guidance to live by.

The words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

“It may be true that the law cannot make a man love me, but it can keep him from lynching me, and I think that’s pretty important.”  Quoted in the Wall Street Journal, Nov. 13, 1962.

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy. The true neighbor will risk his position, his prestige and even his life for the welfare of others.” “The Strength to Love (1963)

“We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.”  Speech in St. Louis, MO March 22, 1964

“We will have to repent this generation not merely for the hateful words and actions of the bad people but for the appalling silence of the good people.”  “Letter from Birmingham Jail,” April 16, 1963

“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” speech, Aug. 28, 1963

Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” “Letter from Birmingham Jail,” April 16, 1963

“Like anybody, I would like to live a long life. Longevity has its place.  But I’m not concerned about that now. I just want to do God’s will.  And he’s allowed me to go up to the mountain.  And I’ve looked over, and I’ve seen the promised land … So I’m happy tonight.  I’m not worried about anything. I’m not fearing any man.”  “I’ve been to the mountaintop” speech, April 3, 1968 [the day before he was assassinated]

Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed”  “Letter from Birmingham jail,”  April 16, 1963

“When we let freedom ring, when we let it ring from every tenement, and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old spiritual, “Free at last, free at last.  Thank God Almighty, we are free at last.”  “I have a dream” speech, Aug 28, 1963.

“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, “What are you doing for others.”

“Everybody can be great, because anybody can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.”

“I have decided to stick to love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.”

“If you can’t fly, then run.  If you can’t run, then walk.  If  you can’t walk, then crawl.  But whatever you do, you have to keep moving forward.”

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that.  Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.”

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”

A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual doom.”

“Never forget that everything Hitler did in Germany was legal.”

Whatever your life’s work is, do it well. A man should do his job so well that the living, the dead and the unborn could do it no better.”

What is your favorite?  Might you be able to incorporate it into your life in a new way?

Molly Larkin

Molly Larkin is the co-author of the international best-seller "The Wind Is My Mother; The Life and Teachings of a Native American Shaman”  and other books on health. She is passionate about helping people live life to their fullest potential through her classes, healing practice and blog at www.MollyLarkin.com

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