Holding on to the Baton of a King


Today many of us will choose to honor the dream and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, while others wait in disgust for America to make due on its overdrawn check, written in the name of “liberty and justice for all.”

What will you decide to do with this day and this dream of King’s?

I find myself somewhere in the middle of hope and hell no, here we go again!

Seems like America is still in school and history is our teacher.

There is more to learn about severing systematic tentacles of racism and white privilege that sliver in taking root of minds, churches, and institutions.

In the same way, there is more to learn from the impartation of a generation who put motion to their devotion for equality and freedom.

I don’t get to sulk in my righteous apathy when my 95 year-old-grandmother tells me with joy and pride, You all are all my dreams.

The sparkle in her aging eyes holds the peace and confidence of one who has successfully passed on the baton of her best in life.

She makes me think about the best I’m trying to pass along.

My passion for God and his best for me . . .

My love for family, togetherness, and home . . .

My commitment to justice and service . . .

My grandmother has run her course and now it is time for me to run mine—even when it’s ugly and I don’t see the progress. Even when Black bodies fall and I am afraid to let my son and daughters walk alone through the streets of our white neighborhood.

I must still carry the baton of the dream—the dream beyond the status quo. I must take my run at making this world a better place in my lifetime, in my family, in my neighborhood, in my “right now.” My dream may not look like yours—but you too have a baton to carry and pass on.

Dr. King in his brokenness and brilliance ran the course of his call.

He was not a perfect man, but he consistently chose faith over fear—time and time again.

I want that kinda courage.

I want that kinda conviction.

Looks like the only way we can grab ahold of that kinda legacy is to keep ahold of our baton.

Let’s listen again and remember the dream.

Dr. Martin Luther King: “I Have A Dream

Velynn Brown

4 thoughts on “Holding on to the Baton of a King

  1. Faith over fear. That seems a goal worth coming back for, as many times as needed. Happy broken/beautiful/standing up anyway day, which I guess is every day. But also this one.

    • Yes Sis. It is the legacy of my people this triumphant over darkness, this overcoming the odds in the face of immeasurable odds-but it is not for the weary-and many days it is not my preference of choice. But maybe it is my worship, my broken and hurting surrender of what’s not right in this racist world in exchange for the only thing that is always fair, just and right-JESUS! He was an underdog. He was rejected and whipped to a pulp. He understands what my people are going through and one day He will redeem it all.

  2. “Seems like America is still in school and history is our teacher.” Sadly this is true. I wish our country would wake up. I love how you describe your grandmother and how you want to carry the baton. None of us are perfect. We are all broken, but we can follow God and He will give us strength to do the right thing no matter how hard. Blessings to you, Velynn!

    • Thank you Gayl. On my bad days I’m reminded of her stories of working on a plantation and being “the help”. Although oppression and racism transcend age and generations there is so much I have benefitted from by those paved the way to freedom for me. We truly have come a long way, yet there is still such a long way to go. God is our strength in this broken world. He will guide us through-doesn’t mean it will not come without battle, bruises and brokenness. Either way each of us must fight our own fight. <3

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.