Being confident, especially in the face of suffering, isn’t easy for anyone. Tomorrow our nation celebrates the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and honors his memory and leadership.
Dr. King certainly faced challenges in his life and work as a leader. Yet he was confident in who he was and what he stood for.
From the time he first got involved in the civil rights movement during the Montgomery, Alabama bus boycott, his life was often in danger. On April 3 1968, Dr. King was in Memphis to address a crowd of striking sanitation workers at Mason Temple. His flight had been delayed because of a bomb threat.
In the face of danger and suffering at the hands of his enemies, Dr. King spoke these words with confidence.
“Well, I don’t know what will happen now. We’ve got some difficult days ahead. But it doesn’t matter with me now. Because I’ve been to the mountaintop. And I don’t mind.
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. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people will get to the promised land.
And I’m happy, tonight. I’m not worried about anything. I’m not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord.”
The next day, April 4, Dr. King lost his life when an assassin’s bullet felled him.
Dr. King confident leadership wasn’t about posturing and proclaiming.
He spoke out against injustice and tried to change things for the better. His actions put him in real danger and yet he never wavered. In the midst of suffering he resolved to do what was right, all while in the service of others.
Leaders in every area of life and business can learn from Dr. King’s example. Let’s all be more confident in the face of injustice, bold in the pursuit of peace, and humble in the service of others.
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