“Anchor the eternity of love in your own soul and embed this planet with goodness.”
Lewis’s childhood nickname was “Preacher” because he was called to the ministry at an early age, though social justice would become his life calling. You can hear the preacher in the sermon-like line above. His life as an activist and political leader was rooted in a desire to do good, to be righteous in deed, and to love. He practiced what he preached–pursuing equality and justice both in America and the world beyond–getting into “good trouble,” a phrase he came up with to defend his frequent arrests to his parents–he was arrested over 40 times in the 1960s and not a few times thereafter. Lewis is a hero not because he survived but because he persisted, returning to the fight again and again and again. He was humble and recognized the many, many individuals who took the same risks as he did but kept returning to the struggle. He honored the sacrifices of their allies, too many of whom became martyrs, and the rightness of their cause. He encouraged others, new generations, to take the baton and admired their courage and willingness to do so. One of his last public appearances was at the Washington, D.C. street mural of Black Lives Matter. Good trouble, always.
Below is a link to the NY Times obituary for Representative Lewis. Thanks to our friend Janice Novet for sharing this particular quote by John Lewis, a man whose soul embedded goodness in our planet.
Read yesterday’s Thought. Thought of the Day (TOD) is selected by Rick Larios, Monday-Friday, minus public holidays and an arbitrarily chosen summer vacation. Saturday and Sunday, Stacey will be selecting TODs from the archives of past postings. Often, but not always, a comment comes with the quote. TOD originates as a personal email list-sharing and is further shared here with permission. A poem appears in full on Fridays; the copyright belongs to the poet and/or publisher. Buy poetry you like. It will be good for you, good for poets, and order from your local community bookstore and it will be good for them too.