Remembering Martin Luther King, Jr.: “I Have a Dream” and Letter from a Birmingham Jail


Every year on this day set aside for celebrating the life and legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr., I make time to listen to or read his famous “I Have a Dream Speech.” I encourage you today to read the speech or watch (below) the roughly seventeen-minute speech that King gave over fifty years ago. He articulates a vision that transcends his individual life and puts into eloquent words the deepest longings of many people not only then but also now. This speech still rings with power, reminding us that, as he said, “Nineteen sixty-three is not an end, but a beginning.” We have come so far but we still have so far to go.

I encourage you to go further in understanding Dr. King’s legacy by reading his 1963 “Letter from Birmingham Jail” or to read some of his prayers (two examples can be found here and here). You may also be challenged and encouraged by Frederick Douglass’ 1852 speech “The Meaning of July Fourth for the Negro.” Here is a collect from The Book of Common Prayer related to King’s life and legacy:

Almighty God, by the hand of Moses your servant you led your people out of slavery, and made them free at last: Grant that your church, following the example of your prophet Martin Luther King, may resist oppression in the name of your love, and may strive to secure for all your children the blessed liberty of the Gospel of Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

“In the Beginning” (Genesis, part 1) – a new series at Eastbrook Church

This coming Sunday at Eastbrook Church we begin a new preaching series entitled “In the Beginning,” which will be the first of a two-part series on Genesis, chapters 1-11. This series explores Genesis 1-3. Genesis is a book of beginnings, setting the stage for all that comes afterwards not only in that book but in the entire Bible. This series will explore some key ideas found in the first three chapters of the book of Genesis, including the creation of the world and humanity, as well as the Fall of humanity into sin.

Here are the weekly topics for this seven-part series, which leads up to the beginning of Lent:

January 8 – “Before Anything, There is God the Creator” – text: Genesis 1:1-2

January 15 – “The Genesis 1 Account of Creation” – text: Genesis 1:1-2:3

January 22 – “The Genesis 2 Account of Creation” – text: Genesis 2:4-25

January 29 – “The Creation of Humanity” – text: Genesis 1:26-31; 2:4-24

February 5 – “Humanity, God’s Stewards of Creation” – text: Genesis 1:26-31; 2:15, 19-20

February 12 – “The Fall, part 1” – text: Genesis 3:1-13

February 19 – “The Fall, part 2” – text: Genesis 3:14-24

Canticles of Christmas – a new series at Eastbrook Church

This coming Sunday at Eastbrook Church we begin our journey of Advent as well as a new preaching series entitled “Canticles of Christmas.” This series explores the prayers found in the Gospel of Luke, chapters 1-2, as doorways into the celebration of Advent and key theological revelations of God’s plan in Christ.

Here are the weekly topics for this five-part series, which surrounds our celebration of Christ’s nativity on December 24 and December 25:

November 27 – “May It Be Unto Me As You Have Said” (Fiat Mihi) – text: Luke 1:26-38

December 4 – “My Soul Glorifies the Lord” (Magnificat) – text: Luke 1:46-55

December 11 – “Praise Be to the Lord” (Benedictus) – text: Luke 1:67-79

December 18 – “Glory to God in the Highest” (Gloria)- text: Luke 2:8-20

December 24 – “And His Name Shall Be Called…Mighty God”

December 25 – “He Will Be Called Immanuel”

January 1, 2023 – “Now dismiss your servant in peace” (Nunc dimittis) – Luke 2:22-38

Along with the weekend preaching series, we will also have a devotional that will run from Advent through Christmas to Epiphany. You can access the devotional here.

Hope Rising: 1 Thessalonians for Today – a new series at Eastbrook Church

This coming Sunday at Eastbrook Church we begin a new preaching series entitled “Hope Rising: 1 Thessalonians for Today.” The past few years have brought many people to the edge of life, leading some to say we are dealing with a crisis of hope. How do we live in the face of a crisis of hope? One of the Apostle Paul’s earliest writings, 1 Thessalonians, brings us face to face with hope in Christ and what that means for life now and in the future. Over the course of five weeks, we will explore what it means to have living hope as we walk through 1 Thessalonians.

Here are the weekly topics for this five-part series:

October 23 – “Beginning with Hope” – text: 1 Thessalonians 1:1-10

October 30 – “Hope Together” – text: 1 Thessalonians 2:1-3:13

November 6 – “Holy Hope” – text: 1 Thessalonians 4:1-12

November 13 – “Future Hope” – text: 1 Thessalonians 4:13-5:11

November 20 – “Living Hope” – text: 1 Thessalonians 5:12-28

Reset – a new series at Eastbrook Church

This coming Sunday at Eastbrook Church we begin a new preaching series entitled “Reset.” This series is part of a beginning of the year “reset” of our faith and community life as Eastbrook. We know that many have been disengaged during the past couple years, while some are new and have not yet found a place to engage. We will explore four aspects of our life as a church n this series based in Hebrews 10:24-25, which says:

“Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” (Hebrews 10:24-25)

This series is actually more than a series as well. Each and every aspect of our life and ministry as a church will be touched by the Ideas of our “Reset,” which I describe in the video below.

Find out more here and consider joining in with a “Reset” small group or stepping forward to engage with God and His people in new ways. This is a great time to reconnect if you’ve disengaged from church and connect deeper if you’re new. 

Here are the weekly topics for this four-part series:

September 11 – “A Reset on Love”

September 18 – “A Reset on Service”

September 25 – “A Reset on Meeting Together”

October 2 – “A Reset in Light of the Future”