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Personal & Career Development

The ways of God are quite different from the pattern of men, but there are great riches and abundant blessing in the quest of any man who strive in truth and in faith to seek God, who come in faith to understand God, and search for His judgment.

The best of human creativity on earth is still very far from the perfect works and awesome creativity with which God has endowed every man and woman. Therefore, it is difficult to experience true happiness with a sinful lifestyle, a selfish heart, and a perverted and unsanctified mind.

O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God!

How unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! “ (Rom 11:33).

No matter how he tries, the unsaved and unsanctified soul can never find lasting happiness and enduring joy in sheer humanity, carnality, worldly wisdom, godless learning and teaching, in her writing and reading, in her arts, culture, and general humanities, in her music, movies and the media, and in many other material as well as mundane affairs of man.

Man’s sensational life is as most comprehensive, and as highly complicated. Those who know most in this imperfect state, feel their own weakness most. This convinces us of the vanity of the world, and that it cannot make us happy.

The vileness of sin, and its certain tendency to make us miserable, are the tools of Satan to ensnare and buffet us upon the earth, and rob us of any lasting joy and happiness. The heart of man is in recurring demand for insatiable wants and desires, and no human creativity can satisfy the yearnings of the soul.

True happiness and lasting joy could only be found in God when your heart is led unto Christ Jesus through the guidance of the Holy Spirit and the Word of God.

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Know thyself!

Your best moment of clarity, genuine excitement, and passionate living for a true purpose comes when you truly discover yourself, and know your real reason for living.

Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God’s elect, and the acknowledging of the truth … which is committed unto me.

Converted on the road to Damascus while on his way to persecute Christians, Paul became one of the most faithful and dedicated Apostle of Jesus Christ. Apostle Paul was so committed and consecrated to his divine encounter with risen and resurrected Christ that he vigorous contended for the gospel once delivered unto the Apostles.

In his creative life after conversion into Christianity, Apostle Paul defended the creative word of God in the Bible as the power of the Gospel which leads unto the salvation of everyone that believes.

How do you describe yourself?

What is your calling in life?

How were you called, by revelation, instinct or intuition, through a mentor’s guidance, or by the Ouija box?

Why were you called unto that line, career, or profession?

The moment you make the vital discovery of your true self is your moment of creative living. That is the time of highly effective solutions that turns your life around and make it smarter, better, and more meaningful than it ever was, as enunciated here:

https://www.scribd.com/doc/270355773/Wake-Up-the-Creativity-in-You

One vital thread that is common among genius and high-achieving personalities is that they seem to be more open than most other people are! The world has the habit of making room for the man whose words and actions show that he knows where he is going, spending time and sharing with vital people who would make him stronger and better.

Sadly, great achievement does not guarantee happiness. Essential creativity, great customers, and wonderful admirers do not just fill your heart with happiness; they may get you what you want, but lasting happiness comes from within. Many of history’s most celebrated creative geniuses were mentally ill at one point or the other.

How do you get it?

The scarlet Thread of Redemption runs through the entire Bible, only genuinely creative people in the Godly sense, and definitely not in the worldly sense, notice it, tie it to their loins as they pass through the narrow gate to the Kingdom of God. Such people are more creative about life and living in the very true sense, and in the most vital aspects and ways than very, very, many other people are!

Creative living, on the part of man in his society, is the right and the freedom to pursue a variety of courses towards the solution of problems within his environment, and the right to chase ideas and agendas that are his inalienable right, and are legal, though they may differ from the common trend.

Creativity is a highly developed move to prove that a new way, a better method, or an advanced approach is possible, realistic, and superior to the former.

The New Testament is far superior to the Old. The creativity of the New Testament grace was amplified in the failure of the Old Testament laws and legalism, bondage, rituals and rites, and ceremonies, which leads to death.

The New Testament is creative in that it brings bundles of joy with redemption through the atoning blood of Jesus Christ, granting all believers freedom from Satan and sin, providing freedom while giving truly fulfilled life here and hereafter.

The power of redemption is the power of creation, because redemption is the transformation of sinful man into true holiness and righteousness by God, through genuine salvation in Christ Jesus. This is the only way for any man to get back to God, and to truly regain his lost authority and dominion that was stolen by Satan and sin.

“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” (2Co 5:17). There never can be any better creativity in the life of any man than his salvation, his redemption from sinfulness into full redemption with Christ.

Christianity actually began in the Garden of Eden when God promised a Messiah to redeem fallen mankind. Judaism was a shadow, means of worshiping God to keep God’s Plan of Redemption and the coming Messiah in focus.

Just like in the world, the children of Israel, deluded, deceived by sheer religion, hold on to the shadow, and rejected the Substance – the promised Messiah and His teachings – Christianity.

The Twelve Apostles and early disciples were uneducated men and women who patiently and thoroughly learned and follow the way and truth of God. They were not religious, not refined in letters, with peculiar faults and personal challenges, just like anyone else, yet turned out the best tools and personnel for The Christ.

They were neither scribes nor Pharisees, not scholars nor rabbis, but became genius and experts through the training and touch of the Master. Awakened creativity in man!

In The Great Commission, twelve Apostles, few other disciples, and the Holy Spirit, spread and fostered the embers of Christianity from Jerusalem to Judea, to Samaria, and to the uttermost part of the world. Is there a greater creativity than this?

The Apostles were able to apply God’s grace, rather than might or carnal knowledge, to fan the flames of the Gospel successfully, which would spread across the face of the earth, and continue to burn bright and glow brilliantly throughout the centuries until this very day.

You could discover your imperfections and frailty through self-realization and soul-searching. Biblical faith and Bible study reveals the ultimate truth about life and hereafter to anyone bold enough to believe in God and trust His words. This is a lifetime achievement beyond the diplomas, the awards, championships, business success or inventions. It guarantees an inheritance safely kept in Heaven for you by God.

You can only live this life once, and then comes death and judgment.

Faith in God is the essential key to life’s true and thorough ingenuity and creativity. Your hope in God gives you the confidence to face life’s incongruous uncertainties.

You could always wither the storms of life and gloriously enter in the other side if you hinge your faith in God rather than man and all other human creativity.

I know my Heavenly Father knows the storms that would oppose my way;

But, He can drive away the clouds, and turn my darkness into day.

To know my Lord is to love Him

To love my God is to do His will,

To do His will always, is absolute creativity.

Awake, awake, please awake, God’s creativity in me!

https://www.scribd.com/doc/270355773/Wake-Up-the-Creativity-in-You

https://www.scribd.com/doc/169083775/Making-the-Right-Move-Decision-Making-to-the-Top

The hour of decision is the most crucial moment of any life on any day.

Surprisingly many people live day by day by taking chances, banking on Mother Luck, or just by being passive about most vital issues of life.

This is the major reason why most lives are just mere subsistence ordinary lives, so many people living barely on threadbare, without a purpose, without joy or happiness, and sadly without any sort of achievement or accomplishment from cradle to the grave.

In the golden words of Theodore Roosevelt, “In any moment of decision,

The best thing you can do is the right thing,

The next best thing is the wrong thing,

And the worst thing you can do is nothing.”

Most people usually choose to do nothing, and no wonder, they always get the worst outcome.

Your fate is sealed and your destiny is determined during those crucial and vital moments of decision-making. However, so many people are very complacent about what to do when vital decisions are to be made and crucial choices are to be taken.

All true success story has a struggle before the prize, decision-making comes before every purposeful action. Your decision today determines your destiny tomorrow.

Every one of us comes now and then to some crossroads in life. While many failures in life take difficulties, disappointments, and life challenges as hard blows and hindrances, successful people accept hindrances and life burdens as opportunities to make the most important decision they will ever make.

While failed people cry over their hindrances and burdens of life, successful men and women take moments of disaster and times of hardship and difficulties as their defining moments and the turning point for a decisive life change.

Making The Right Move is the common denominator separating those who live their dreams from those who live in regret.

Life’s greatest rewards are reserved for those who could show a never-ending commitment to make bold decisions, and could act and harp on their resolutions until they meet their life dreams.

This level of resolve can move mountains, but it must be constant and consistent.

Because these traits are not necessarily inborn, anyone with resolute determination can work on acquiring them.

People, who can, always can! This is the main theme of this little treatise.

Please click on tab below to read more….

https://www.scribd.com/doc/169083775/Making-the-Right-Move-Decision-Making-to-the-Top

https://www.scribd.com/doc/245121422/You-ll-Never-Walk-Alone

The subject of success and personal achievement has gained much popularity and desire in the affairs of men from time immemorial. Success, personal achievement, wealth, and prosperity have become cultural idols with which men, communities, nations and continents are defined.

The ideas of the rich against the poor, the successful and the unsuccessful, the prosperous against the needy, the developed nations against the developing or poor nations, the industrialized against the under-developed, the superpowers against the less powerful group, has been in the categorizations of men and communities from time to time.

This kind of orientation is usually classified in line with the so-called American Dream phenomenon – “You can get it if you really want to get it, just try, try, and try, and you will succeed at last” or “If you work hard enough, you can be anything you want to be.”

Success in anything at all is to have a peace of mind and self-satisfaction in your achievements.

This state of inner calmness and tranquility together with a sense of freedom, when thoughts and worries cease, and stress, strain or fear disappear can only come from God when you do His will.

“And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (Php 4:7).

The biblical ‘Parable of the Talents’ offers profound insight into the true meaning of success and the real purpose of work and human labor. Three servants were given different amounts of money, denominated by talents, each according to his ability. A servant was given five talents, another was given two talents, and the third servant was given one talent.

The first and second servants doubled their investments and received the master’s praise. The third servant, who was given one talent, safeguarded the money but did nothing to increase it. The third servant was condemned by the master for his inactivity.

Lessons of life have taught us that we cannot travel the journey of life all alone. You need The Lamb’s guide and lead at every twist and turn. God gives the in-born talents and gifts plus the tools with which to achieve success. Your faithfulness in trading rightly and correctly for good profitability is all that God require from you.

You get into the trenches, roll up your sleeves and get reconciled with God to become a partaker of the kingdom of God, and then go out to fulfill the Great Commission, making disciples of men and women. “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”

Into what have you cultivated and invested your God-given talents – is it unto your selfish ego and personal aggrandizements or unto furthering the kingdom of God. It takes faith to plough our God-given talents into doing the will of God and in furtherance of His kingdom, whether you have been given one, two, or five talents.

This is a higher kind of stewardship, and the one that could only fetch you enduring happiness and eternal reward. It is the only stewardship from which you will receive the commendation: “Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.”

It is your love of the Master that drives and inspires your work. And since the end always justify the means, you will never lack bread and butter on your table, children in your house, and peace of God in your family and life.

I am not unmindful of the popular pattern and formulas for success by imitating the life-styles and methods of renowned rich men, industry leaders, and economic gurus. The Bible does not teach us how to become the next Henry Ford, Andrew Carnegie, Mark Zuckerberg or King Solomon.

There are so much trainings in visualization, meditation, hypnosis, brainwave entrainment, visualization, NLP – neuro-linguistic program processes, subliminal messaging, mindfulness, Emotional Freedom Techniques – EFT, Law of Attraction, Tapping, and so many other techniques and programs.

The simple message of the scriptures is to guide every willing heart how to receive the Master’s well done – the praise of our Lord Jesus Christ.

“Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.

In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.

Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.

It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.

Honour the LORD with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase:

So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine.” Pro 3: 5 – 10).

Bible reading is a great way to start to understand the way of God and His pattern for your life. The Bible is not arranged in the same way as your regular books. Rather, the Bible is its own interpreter and best teacher of the scriptures.

Life is full of friendly foes and unrelenting enemies, yet God cares.

Whether you are wrapped all over and all around with snares, miseries, calamities, plagues, and death, God always have a great plan for you.

God walks with the simple and reveal Himself to the humble.

He gives wisdom and great understanding to all who are teachable like babes.

To those who are pure in mind God opens the ken of knowledge and good sense. But His grace, very clear and glaring in man and nature, is hidden from the proud and the arrogant.

God moves in mysterious ways to perform His wonders in the lives of men.

Those who strive to live unto God, who trusts in Him, are never ignorant of the divine sweetness and support promised for the persevering and unwavering believer.

While many people mistake Christianity for religion, the blessing of walking with Christ goes beyond the provision of bread and butter for the hungry, shelter for the homeless, and sound health and care for the sick and needy, a better life is assured all who walk in faith with the Savior, not only in this life, but in His coming Kingdom.

Walk on, through the wind
Walk on, through the storm,
And don’t be afraid of the dark
He’ll appear and take your feeble hands,
You’ll never walk alone!

Please click below to read more.

https://www.scribd.com/doc/245121422/You-ll-Never-Walk-Alone

 

 

“Let us make hay while the sun shines” (Cervantes). Life is rough and tough, only the very strong in mind and purpose can overcome. This is why Personal Development and self-help are keys to a meaningful and purposeful life.

That you were born fully alive into the world is a success story. Many pregnancies got aborted before birth while a great majority died as stillbirths. Many other lives were lost through miscarriage of pregnancies, while another large group failed to survive the attack of common cold, influenza, polio, measles and various other diseases of childhood.

There is a time to be born and a time to die. No one has ever cheated death indefinitely, therefore, live life so well so that you will die very well, leaving good legacies behind.

Every tickling second, every passing minute, every going hour, every moving day, every turning week, every rolling month and every emerging year are times in space. Never overlook the dominant aspects of making your life purposeful and enriching.

Why am I here?

Where am I going?

What is my next move?

You need to answer personal questions and pass checklists which query your level of personal growth and self-development. There is only one life to live. Find out who you are, discover what you are here on earth to achieve, and discover your inherent powers and inborn endowments or talents to apply them fruitfully into wisdom and successful achievement.

Purpose, the essence of life!

Find out what God would have you do.

And do that little well.

For what is great and what is small.

‘Tis only He can tell. (Anonymous)

Purpose is the raison d’être of our existence, and the major driver for whatever we seek most in life. Purpose is the embodiment of our resolutions and the focal point of our goals and dreams. A man of purpose is a man that has a focus and a noble desire or goal for great expectations.

The barbaric execution of American journalist, James Foley is very sad and very disturbing. Mr. Foley paid the maximum price for exposing the atrocities of terrorists and religious fanatics in major war zones across the world. Though his work was difficult while his calling and career was fraught with danger, yet James Foley was a man of purpose.

It was his aim to tell a larger audience and educate the global village about the sufferings and hardships of women, children and the aged caught across fire in war zones and troubled parts f the world. Without determined, dedicated and purposeful journalists like James Foley, the world would stay in the dark about the sufferings of innocent citizens who were caught across fire in war zones and crisis spots..

My Aim

“I live for those who love me, for those who know me true;

for the heavens that smiles above me, and awaits my spirit too.

For the cause that lacks assistance, for the wrong that needs resistance,

for the future in the distance, and the good that I can do.” (G. L. Banks).

You are never too late to have a life of purpose and celebrate great personal achievement. Everyone is born to rule and to reign. Each one of us is here on Earth to achieve something significant, meaningful, substantive, and extraordinary. You can make a difference if you could simply discover, and truly believe within your heart that Life Holds a Specific Purpose for You!

Find out this purpose and seek for its achievement.

  1. Discover your life purpose

Your natural tendencies, talents and gifts are direct endowments which enhances personal development and career planning for a purposeful life and successful achievements. The biggest challenge to any man is the attitude of contentment with mere existence and subsistent living. Eighty out of every one hundred people are contented with being drifters all their lives, going wherever the tide leads them rather than command the tide to be calm and still while they determine and chose their God-given paths in life.

Sit down today and set out this hour to lift your very self out of the cloudy mindset of uncertainty that has limited you to mere survival and menial achievement. Find out through purposeful searching of your mind where your mental prowess and creativity acumen lies. Convince yourself of the choice and decision you have made, who you ought to be, what course and purpose you ought to pursue, and the way you are supposed to go in life. Then go out afterwards into the world to excel and prosper.

  1. Determine to achieve the goals God has destined you to attain.

Attainment of life goals and dreams takes a lot of determination and dedication to the chosen course. Inherent and inbuilt in every human are latent powers and capabilities for excellent achievements in life. Your determination for successful achievement and purposeful life calls for dedication to a singular course.

Self-discovery is one thing, mustering up every element of personal development and self growth and tutelage to realize that discovery is the essential task that each man and woman must strive for. Start now to lay by all your resources, abilities, and capabilities towards the attainment of a singular purpose and one specific course to which you are dedicated.

  1. Go, Get Meaningful Goals

The central focus of personal development is the growth of the person into his full tendencies and abilities. When you are fully developed into your real self, then you could perform at your utmost best. Develop self-confidence, have faith your abilities to excel, and then go out with divine guidance to excel. Heaven help those who help themselves.

Go, but go in faith. Get, but you must get the best. With clear focus around your mission and an unblemished vision to achieve meaningful goals you would soon begin to live out the man of purpose inherent in you. Never rest your oars but rather set out to attain your dreams one day at a time, one goal at each shot. Set up your success staircase with meaningful personal development, realistic growth efforts, and go get the goals!

  1. Be unique, be different, and outstanding!

Through self-discovery and personal development efforts, every man and woman must strive to become purposeful and successful. Never accept the Xerox copy lifestyle, trying to copy the Joneses and the Johnsons.

Work hard but work well to emerge your successful true self. Make the difference, the stand-out and outstanding guy between the busy, purposeless, and unproductive crowd and the successful life. Live out the resourceful, productive, and purposeful life.

Move out of the crowd this day and begin to make a difference. Look to this day and say to the world in clear tones that you are the difference. Let the whole world know from today that you are a man of purpose, a resourceful, productive, and purposeful personality.

  1. Take time to do things with determined purpose

A vital aspect of personal growth and self development is effective time management. This is the way to get things done, and the way to do them very well. The Lord God has taught us to number our days so that we may apply our hearts, our mind, our plans, and our ways unto wisdom.

Highly efficient and very effective time management practice is vital to a happy, purposeful and fulfilling life. Knowing what one needs to achieve is one major part of the process. The second vital part of it is setting adequate time and mileposts with dedication and focus to accomplish that goal.

Never try to overlook the crucial and mundane aspects of the process, they are the very vital elements of the big picture. Dream dreams, set goals, but set rules with timeframe to accomplish your goals.

  1. Make yourself the doer, the one who make things happen!

Let the world recognize you as the doer who make good things happen, no matter what. Develop yourself into the skilled and successful achiever whom others look up to.

Stick to a purposefully determined task and carry it through. The real world actually admires the stern determined doer. People always regard the doer who makes things happen.

  1. Be a man among men, Master Your Destiny!

Accept early in life that your destiny is in your own hands. Apply credible personal development trainings and aptitudes to master your own fate and perfect your own calling in life. Your future lay squarely on your own hands, therefore never waste time pondering for a windfall from family or friends; it mostly would never come, or comes too late.

“Never give up, never give up, never, never give up”! You must never give up in the face of challenges and obstacles on your way to progress and success in bold pursuit of your destiny.

Only successful people keep moving in the face of mistakes and faulty starts.

Only winners would never quit, but would hang onto their dreams after others had let go.

Only successful people understand that fortune favors the bold.

Life definitely holds a specific purpose for you!

Stand out of the big crowd to achieve this purpose, start today to be the champion, and not just another spectator at championships!

“Business is not just doing deals; business is having great products, doing great engineering, and providing tremendous service to customers. Finally, business is a cobweb of human relationships.” Ross Perot.

In whatever color, shape or form, business is a vital aspect of life. People make honest businesses as much as dishonest ones. To be shrewd is being accurate or clever at judging people and situations, especially in business and projects. Honest business people abound as much as we have honest people. The world is equally awash with dishonest people and businesses. Your kind of person and the way you execute your business are closely intertwined.

An honest man is someone who:

Says what they mean,

Does not steal,

Does not lie,

Respect their responsibly to self,

Respect their responsibility to family, and

Respect their responsibility to society

What then makes an honest business person?

Honesty to self

To be honest and truthful to self is a major hallmark of an honest business person. This principle denotes doing business with a clear conscience and peace of mind. To be honest to oneself equals being honest to humanity, and to God, truthfully doing what you set out to do, honestly professing what you claim you are, and justly serving or selling you displayed goods and services.  Your mind is thus free from all guilt.

Honest to Family

To be honest to one’s spouse and family is the greatest indicator of the faithfulness and fidelity of a spouse and her innermost cell and members of her most private caucus in life. To deny one’s spouse and children of essential personal and private matters in the relationship and family life is a great indicator that one would not be truthful to business partners as required, which may lead to fraud, cheating, deception and lack of trust among the business parties.

Responsibility to Society

Those who tried to cheat the society in one way or another, or through tax payment evasion, eventually come back to pay heavily for it. “He that walketh uprightly walketh surely: but he that perverteth his ways shall be known. The labour of the righteous tendeth to life: the fruit of the wicked to sin. Pro. 10: 9, 16).

Truthful to one’s calling

A thorough search and development of one self, and the pursuit of that business in which one has profound knowledge or is an authority makes you excel without taking undue advantage of others. Doing what you know best prevent you from presenting a shoddy product or sub-standard service. While getting business is needful, not all businesses are expedient to one. Therefore, truthful pursuit of the trade in which you are best gifted prevents you from cover up and dishonest practices.

Fair and just measures

An honest business person would endeavor to be honest even in the slightest of all his transactions. He would not accept dishonest deals and illegal transactions. Neither would he take undue advantage of people and government. He uses proper measures and standards. He avoids deception, and does not cheat. He is fair and just in all his dealings; would even go the extra mile to forgive people who are unfair to him.

 Veracity

While seeking success, the honest business person is habitually truthful, does not lie, and not a charlatan. He is principled, truthful, and consistent as he strives to succeed in businesses and deals.

Strict integrity

The man who has set his good moral principles, and steadfastly adheres to those principles in all situations and transactions is an honest business person. He is undivided in his ways, completely and always in a sound state of mind and state of being.

Generosity

Because he is honest, he is also kind and generous. His generosity enhances his principle of honesty, keeping him good to people and the society without any expectation of reward, returns or public recognition of his goodness and philanthropy.

 Accountability

He pays taxes, public dues and levies without cutting corners. He renders proper and true accounts, records and reports without fair or favor to self, organization, or business transactions and projects.

Not selfish

An honest business person is not selfish. Even though he believes that profitability is the soul of business, he prosecutes his transactions without being self-centered. He makes more business and profit because of his selfless attitude.

Not Slothful

”Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise:Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler, Provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest. How long wilt thou sleep, O sluggard? when wilt thou arise out of thy sleep? Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep: So shall thy poverty come as one that travelleth, and thy want as an armed man”.  (Pro. 6: 6 – 11)

 Goodwill

An honest business person has goodwill towards staff, employees and business partners. As a result, he is not envious of the progress or achievement of other people. He is equally free from the negative tendencies of hatred, jealousy, malice, pessimism, fear, and doubt which are the recourse of a dishonest life and deals.

 Support the needy

An honest business person is a philanthropist deep in his heart. He gives in support of worthy causes, not to evade the tax but rather out of principle and attitude towards life. He understands the intrinsic benefit of helping others, and the enduring happiness of supporting the needy.

In conclusion, the person who has principled his life on the path of the golden rule, never to do unto another that which he would not be willing for other people to do unto him in return, or in a reversed condition, is the honest business person.

Mr. Andrew Young emerged from a mainly white constituency to become the first black United States Congressman from Georgia. He later became the U.S. Representative to the United Nations.

General Colin Powell was the first African-American Secretary of State, followed by Ms. Condoleezza Rice.

Barack Obama handsomely won the American elections to become the first African-American President of the United States of America. He was sworn-in today for the second-term as the 44th President of the most powerful nation in the world.

There are many more people in dignified callings and respectable careers, African-Americans, Latinos, Arabs, and Asian-Americans, even under-classed white people, who would have otherwise been pushed under for racism, but for the deft, perseverance, dedication and struggle of the nonviolent movement championed by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. These are testimonies to the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Though African-Americans were denied rights and liberties, Dr. King had “a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed.” In celebrating him, we read about him, reflect on his works, his methods, rejoice in his accomplishments, and resolve to carry forward, in the spirit of non-violence, the unfinished tasks of a non-racial egalitarian society where one is judged “not by the color of his skin, but by the content of his character”.

The Supreme Court in March 1857 gave a landmark judgment where Justice R. B. Taney declared that African Americans were not citizens of the U.S. and should not derive any right from the constitution of The United States. It became clear that African-Americans needed more than the response of Abraham Lincoln that “the authors of the Declaration of Independence never intended ‘to say all were equal in color, size, intellect, moral developments, or social capacity’, but they ‘did consider all men created equal—equal in certain inalienable rights, among which are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness’.” (Abraham Lincoln, 1858, Jaffa, pp. 299-300).

The history of African-Americans in the United States has some similarities to that of the children of Israel in Egypt. The goodness of Joseph and the famine in the land of Canaan led to the movement of the House of Jacob to Egypt. But when the king that knew Joseph was no more, the circumstance of the Israelites in Egypt turned into nightmares. Moses led the liberation squad.
A great population of Africans were captured and transported to the New World as a workforce for the agricultural fields, and later, the industries. Many died on the voyages; others became casualties to the climate of their new world, while some others fell to the harsh working conditions and severe taskmasters. The survivors were subjected to slavish struggle from one generation to another.

When slavery was abolished, African-Americans were declared free to live as they wish, where they want, and with whomever they choose. But most of the slave-owners, particularly in the southern territory of the United States, reneged on this arrangement. The post-war era witnessed the wanton application of segregation laws which subjugated formerly freed black slaves into the firm control of the whites. Every aspect of the life of the black man was segregated all across the southern states. These codes, called Jim Crow Laws, forced the black people into the rural regions where they were subjected to forced labor on the farmlands.

Congress legislated to correct these anomalies through constitutional amendments.
The Thirteenth Amendment to the constitution in 1865 confirmed the Emancipation Proclamation setting free the slaves.
The Fourteenth Amendment constitutionally granted citizenship rights to the African-Americans in 1868.
The Fifteenth Amendment of 1870 confers on all male adult citizens the rights to vote without denial as a result of one’s race, color, or past record of servitude.

However, one hundred years after the Proclamation of Emancipation, almost all African-American population were not free, were not proven citizens, and could therefore not vote or be voted for.
It was into this kind of parlous situation that Martin Luther King, Jr. was born in Atlanta, Georgia, on January 15, 1929. Living and growing up as a child in Atlanta, little King was able to understand racism and segregation firsthand when he found out that the children he used to play with as a child were no longer his friends when he started school. He found out that his parents could not just go anywhere they wished to go, and that he could not just attend the schools of his choice because of some certain laws of segregation and discrimination.

Martin attended Booker T. Washington High School in Atlanta, from where he proceeded to Morehouse College. Martin graduated in 1948 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology. King later obtained a Bachelor of Divinity degree from Crozer Theological Seminary, Chester, Pennsylvania in 1951. King got married in 1953, was ordained, and became the pastor of Dexter Avenue Baptist Church, Montgomery, Alabama in 1954. Along with the work of the Ministry, King worked on his Doctoral Degree in Philosophy, which was concluded in 1955. Dr. King took serious interests in Mohandas Gandhi’s methods of nonviolent protest.

Two occurrences happened in 1955 that were to have significant impact on the Dr. King: the black struggle in America, and the image of the black man all over the world.
Claudette Colvin refused to comply with the Jim Crow segregation laws in March 1955 by an utter defiance to give up her bus seat for a white man. She was arrested and tried. Dr. King was the African-American representative on the investigating committee. Colvin went scot free.
On December 1, 1955, Ms. Rosa Parks refused to give up her place in the front row of the section reserved for colored people to a white man. She was arrested and jailed. The Montgomery Improvements Association, led by Dr. King, intervened, boycotting the local bus network for 381 days until Ms Parks was released, and the bus network was desegregated.

From this point onwards Dr. King resolved to give the civil rights movement his entire life, support and dedication.
The Montgomery bus boycott had not only been very successful, but also proved to be a good and fruitful testing ground for Dr. King’s strong conviction in non-violent protest method, and its ability to bring about fruitful results, despite many arrests and intimidation that he and his family suffered. Other civil rights activists who were hitherto bent on forceful means borrowed Dr. King’s non-violent approach, and were able to get good results.

Dr. King went ahead to lead, coordinate and participate in various non-violent civil rights activities that aided in bringing the African-Americans to their land of freedom. The Southern Christian Leadership Conference, the SCLC, was established in 1957 as an umbrella body for Christian leaders to utilize the voice of the churches for successful conduct and execution of non-violent protests. NAACP, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, had been in existence for similar objectives, but the SCLC was an effective vessel in this regard, using the church and the legal approach to get results. Dr. King led the group until his death in 1968.
Despite his tight schedules, Dr. King wrote a great deal. He missed death by the whiskers in 1958 when he was stabbed while signing autographs on copies of his book, Stride towards Freedom.

He further enunciated his Mohandas Gandhi’s style of non-violent protest in another book published in 1959 titled The Measure of Man. That year, Dr. King visited India to learn first-hand the principles of nonviolent persuasion, satyagraha, from Mohandas Gandhi. Later, Dr. King, after being saddled with more responsibilities in the Human Rights movement, stepped down as the Pastor of the Montgomery Baptist Church in Alabama to co-pastor the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta with his father.

Many protests and demonstrations were organized under the leadership of Dr. King. Most often his life was endangered through outright attacks and visible as well indirect threats from racial white opponents. He was arrested and put in jail several times. He was castigated as an anti-social communist, a traitor of the state, and a friend of the enemies of the state. Dr. King neither bothered nor waivered; he rather went about his plans and aspirations for the unfairly treated black people, and the common good of all people no matter their color, creed or lineage.

Dr. King was able to persuade some whites and the American leadership to address the burning subject of inequality that was pervading the American society. Through his leadership, many African-Americans were inspired and led to support his activities. This brought about a new dimension in the lives of the black Americans themselves as well as a new wave of positive reassessment of the black communities by their white folks. Segregation policies were confronted; racialist tendencies were attacked and opposed more than ever. The ultra-racial white supremacy group, the Ku Klux Klan, was greatly intimidated by the style, tactics and wisdom with which Dr. King prosecuted his non-violent campaigns.

The effort of the SCLC in Albany, Georgia in 1961 to demonstrate against segregated facilities failed woefully to accomplish the designed objectives. Nevertheless, Dr. King’s team was able to garner prime national awareness for the plight of African-Americans.

In the spring of 1963, the SCLC protested in Birmingham, Alabama. School children and teenagers were engaged. The police, in the attempt to frustrate the march, pelted them with water hoses and ferocious hounding dogs. These ugly scenes were circulated across the world, giving rise to condemnations of the segregation laws, as well as the retributions of the agents engaged to enforce it. Dr. King and his team won. The authorities were forced to rethink on the real benefits of Jim Crow laws.

Out of spite and anger, the authorities in Birmingham arrested and jailed Dr. King, but he took full advantage of the undeserved punishment. He wrote the famous “Letter from Birmingham Jail” in which he successfully defended and justified the protests. The letter was given wide media coverage, and enhanced Dr. King’s good standing as a moral leader.

Right on the hills of the Birmingham protests in Alabama, Dr. King worked in collaboration with other black leaders to organize the 1963 peaceful march between the Washington Monument and the Lincoln Memorial. It was in this protest march that Dr. King delivered his famous “I have a Dream” speech. In the epic speech, the entire world was addressed on the impatience of African Americans to continue wallowing in poverty and left devoid of basic rights of citizenship and freedom. The march was a great achievement and moment of glory for the civil rights movement and the black community. Its direct effect was the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Dr. King was awarded the Nobel Prize for Peace in the same year.

Dr. King coordinated the march in 1965 on Selma, Alabama, which proceeded to Montgomery with the purpose of drawing national attention to the lack of voting rights by black youths and adults of voting age. The civil disobedience effort was a tough battle with white segregationists and civil authorities. Dr. King narrowly escaped being lynched and brutalized, while many of his colleagues were terribly beaten and maltreated. The day was called Bloody Sunday.
A direct benefit of the Selma march was the signing into law by President Lyndon Johnson in August 1965 of the Voting Rights Act, opening the floodgates for black people of age to vote and be voted for.

Dr. King kept up the tempo to fight injustice in the land in every aspect of the American life till he was assassinated April 4, 1968. He never applied violence, nor did he bear a gun. He was opposed to warfare, a gentleman of peace, law and order. He fought for the causes of the African Americans, but supported, as well the noble causes of other Americans, white, colored, and various immigrants.

While lifting up the status of the African-American to the point of holding the highest office in America, he had made the United States of America a better place than he met it. Yes, celebration is in the air, as we rejoice this January 15th, the Martin Luther King Jr. Day, because all over us, and all around us, are the testimonies and legacies of his achievements, despite the frailties of being human like us.

(http://www.helium.com/items/2208061-the-legacy-of-dr-martin-luther-king).

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