Sometimes change is challenging, but if we understand the power of change, it can be very rewarding.
Black Lives Matter
On August 26 of 2016, San Fransisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick sat during the national anthem to protest the oppression of Black people and people of color. On September 1st, just a few days later, he kneeled upon the advice of ex-Green Beret Nate Boyer.
This single act drew a great deal of controversy from pundits to presidents and caused disruption from the dining room to the board room. Kaepernick became both a symbol of hope and a lightning rod of anger.
You may think that the power of change I’m talking about is change for our Black citizens or in policing or in awareness, but I’m talking about something else entirely, and if you are one of the people who was outraged by Kaepernick’s decision or maybe still are, then you are the person I really want to talk to.
All Lives Matter
If you are one of the people who, when they hear “black lives matter”, they say “all lives matter”, I’m wanting to talk to you about the power of change.
Martin Luther King Jr. has one of the highest approval ratings of any known figure. With over 90% approval, he’s seen as a positive force in our country, but it wasn’t always that way.
In 1966, two years before his assassination, nearly two thirds of American had an unfavorable opinion of him. He was hated and despised by many, constantly receiving death threats, and eventually being killed for his beliefs.
He spoke out against people who were afraid of change. He was more upset about people that wanted peace over justice than he was about the people who were actively oppressing Black people. In “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” he expressed his frustration:
I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the Negro’s great stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen’s Counciler or the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate, who is more devoted to “order” than to justice; who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice
Within days of the publication of Martin Luther King Jr’s remarks, Billy Graham told reporters that Luther should “put the brakes on a little bit.” Looking back on that decision and others, Graham had regrets, “I think I made a mistake when I didn’t go to Selma,” Graham said. “I would like to have done more.”
The fact is we are all afraid of change. It’s challenging. It’s scary. We’re afraid to buck the system. It isn’t until years later we often see how our decisions to avoid change had a negative impact.
The Power of Change
But change has the power to alter a caterpillar and make it a butterfly. It has the power to improve our world by giving us access to information that would have taken hours, days, or even weeks before. It allows us the power to do things we never thought possible.
Even if change seems scary, take the time to contemplate it. Don’t let someone else make your mind up for you; see the breadth of what it truly offers by yourself. Change can move mountains. Literally.
Embrace change. Don’t miss all it has to offer.