Commentary

Alveda King: Overcoming Evil with Good, and Seeking the Strength to Go On, with Prayer

By Alveda King | August 23, 2019 | 2:45pm EDT
(Photo by Jeff Fusco/Getty Images)

Today is Friday, August 23, 2019. Please let me encourage you today: Don’t be overcome with fear, hatred and terror with the reports that are running wild. Look up and have hope. I’m having to do the same thing. When things get rough, I have to resist fighting with my emotions and my opinions. I have to use faith, hope, love and logic when my natural self would want to strike back at the naysayers. Pray for me, please. I’ll pray for you too. 

I’m gearing up for a rough yet joyous week ahead. On Wednesday, August 28, 2019, America, and perhaps the world, will remember that 56 years ago, my uncle, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his iconic “I HAVE A DREAM” speech.

Then, two days later, on August 30-31, 2019, I, as Director of Civil Rights for the Unborn for Priests for Life, will join Catherine Davis of the Restoration Project and Rev. Dean Nelson of the Douglass Leadership Institute as organizers of the “National Day of Mourning for Life.” We are inviting everyone to join us on the caravan through Virginia, North Carolina, Atlanta and culminating in historic Birmingham, Alabama.

Not so long after this historic week, I am praying and expecting to join many African Americans in raising our voices in concert regarding the current state of affairs in America. We are uniting our “black and brown” voices to support the American dream. For us, it’s not so much about politics. It’s about overcoming evil with good.

I for one am excited about all of the advances that President Donald John Trump is making to “Keep America Great”: or his leadership for the sanctity of life, for criminal justice reform, for economic boons in the job market, for tax breaks for the middle class, for incentives for the poor, for bringing jobs back from overseas, and for so much more. I’m just speaking for “lil ole me” here.

As I write this blog, my muse, my inspiration for this message is my grandfather, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Sr. Granddaddy was among those I count as my human heroes. As I am writing, I’m looking at the cover of my book “KING RULES,” where Granddaddy is all decked out in his fedora hat. He’s looking all “spiffy” as he always did. Daddy, (Rev. A. D. King) and Uncle M. L. (Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.) are looking swell too. They were three of the best dressed men I’ve ever known. (You probably know by now that I’m feeling rather nostalgic today.)

There is a reason for this reverie. While America is in the throes of conflict and furor, gearing up for the next wave of political wars, I’m seeking strength to go on. I get that from my King Family Legacy.

In a sermon in Louisville, KY, in the 1960s, my daddy once asked this question:  “Are you only building big bank accounts, or are you building up the souls and aspirations of God’s children?”

I can also remember back as far as the 1950s when granddaddy would be getting dressed to go out. I can almost still smell his aftershave and the smoothness of his cheek when he would lean down to kiss me on my brow. I’d ask him where he was going, and he’d say: “I’m going to see a man about a mule.” Of course, I was too young to understand back then that Granddaddy was talking about the unrealized promise of Negros receiving “40 acres and a mule” as part of a promise for recompense for the days of slavery. Jim Crow was still looming large in those days while Granddaddy was grooming his sons to continue in the fight for justice.

So, I’m starting off my day in prayer and scripture reading. I’m missing my departed loved ones, including my beloved mentor, Pastor Allen McNair.

Let me share some encouraging words as I close:

Don’t be overcome by evil, overcome evil with good. (Romans 12:21)

Don’t throw others under the bus to make yourselves look good. (Luke 18:19)

Don’t be color blind. See the gifts of the diversity of the one blood/one race human spirit. (Acts 17:26)

Stay alert, with your eyes wide open in gratitude. (Colossians 4:2)

Pray for Jubilee. (Luke 4:18-19)

And remember: “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.” (Proverbs 14:34)

Alveda King, niece of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., is the founder of King for America, Inc., consultant to the Africa Humanitarian Christian Fellowship and Pastoral Associate and Director of African-American Outreach for Priests for Life and Gospel of Life Ministries.

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