MLK’s “fierce urgency of now” offers an ideal approach to making the world a better place

I’ve always found it quite fitting that we honor Martin Luther King Jr. just a few weeks after we kick off a new year. The reason I say that is that Dr. King gave us one of those inspiring quotes that serves as the perfect motivator to make the positive changes we know we need to make:

“We are now faced with the fact that tomorrow is today. We are confronted with the fierce urgency of now. In this unfolding conundrum of life and history, there “is” such a thing as being too late. This is no time for apathy or complacency. This is a time for vigorous and positive action.”

Amen.

While it might be tempting to apply Dr. King’s concept of the “fierce urgency of now” to relatively less important items like making those lifestyle changes we know we need to make (healthier eating, fixing relationships), I’m convinced that the quote can and should be used to push us towards bigger and better things.

Things like demanding fair and equal treatment for all people.

And calling out institutions and individuals that keep people and groups from moving forward.

And doing everything in our power to spread the peace, love, and understanding we want to see in the world.

There are so many ways by which we can use Dr. King’s quote (as well as his lifelong example) to positively change the world in which we live. Even more important than the number of ways we can do it, though, is the desperation we should feel as we try to make these things happen.

After all, it’s so incredibly easy to become distracted by the unimportant things in life, the petty and irrelevant things that cause us to lose sight of the big picture.

But for those of us who want to live in the type of world Dr. King dreamed of, that simply cannot be an option. We must stay focused on the task at hand. Day in and day out. That type of laser-beam focus is one of the things I admire most about Dr. King. He was absolutely tenacious in his pursuit of justice.

I hope his focus, his words, and his life inspire you to also commit to making this world a better place. Starting today, of course.

Happy MLK Day!

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