In a week or so, Cliff and I will be taking a road trip down to Memphis. He teaches Civil Rights in his Ethics classes and wants to see the Martin Luther King memorial.
I suspect none of us will ever forget the line, “I have a dream….” It’s iconic. Not just for the Civil Rights movement, but a line that all of us could keep near our hearts.
Jesus had a dream: one of peace and justice. One where people are treated kindly and fairly. Dreams can get you into all kinds of trouble.
And yet, isn’t that what we do in Lent? We have a dream – a dream that we can put down, finally, some behavior in thought, work, or deed. We dream that we can also be kinder, gentler, wiser in the way we respond to people.
We don’t necessarily have to die for our dreams, but we do have to keep working at them. And that in itself is hard enough. We slip; we slide; we forget. We remember and pick up the dream again. And if we are wise, we forgive ourselves and others when we collectively don’t live up to the dream.
Perhaps that’s the real work of Lent. Learning to forgive. And the more we practice forgiving ourselves for our lapses, the more we can forgive others.
Practice dreaming. Practice living the dream. Because when we practice and hit a wrong note, we can always go back to where the clear note began and pick it up again.