Monday, March 20, 2017
I Was a Stranger, Day 20: Valarie Kaur
On New Year's Eve, Valarie Kaur joined Reverend William J. Barber II (who spoke at the Democratic National Convention) and other faith leaders at a "Watch Night Service" at the historic Metropolitan AME Church in DC. An award-winning filmmaker, legal advocate, theologian, and public speaker and third-generation Sikh-American, Kaur is founding director of Groundswell, a nonprofit initiative at Auburn Theological Seminary committed to building the multifaith movement for justice.
Kaur writes in her blog, "There was part of my soul that had been shattered since the election—a part that no one could reach. But the entire service—testimonies, music and song—touched and healed that part of me. So deep, I didn’t even know it needed to be healed until it happened. I will never forget standing there, tears streaming down my face with the deep knowledge that I will not bow down in the fire; I will not stand down, no matter how tired. Thanks to William J. Barber, II for that gift. Whatever I gave, I received ten-fold."
Her speech that night is a must-watch!
She spoke about her grandfather, of how she felt after 9/11, and how her love for her son inspires her actions. Tears came to my eyes as I heard her passionate, beautiful words:
"What if this darkness is not the darkness of the tomb, but of the womb?
What if our America is not dead but a country that is waiting to be born?
What if the story of America is one long labor?
What if this is our nation's great transition?
What does the midwife tell us to do?
Breathe and then push.
If we don't push we will die.
If we don't push our nation will die.
Tonight we will breathe.
Tomorrow we will labor in love, through love.
And your revolutionary love is the magic we will show our children."
This message gives me hope during these hard times.
Read more of my "I Was a Stranger" entries here.