“The Good Neighbor looks beyond those external accidents, and discerns those inner qualities that make all men human and therefore brothers.”
-- from Dr. King's Sermon 'On Being a Good Neighbor" in Strength to love
I thought about, hmm, I can do that I can be a good neighbor. But can I? Can I be a good neighbor when I go to a department store and the salesperson is really not trying to assist me in making a purchase, and she just doesn't want me in the store all together? Can I be a good neighbor when I haven’t done anything, but I’m arrested because I fit the stereotype? Can I be a good neighbor when, no matter that I’ve used all the resources that I know of, yet I lose my home anyway? Can I be the good neighbor, even though I’ve paid for my past mistakes, no one will hire me? Can I be the good neighbor when the person I‘ve trusted to raise and care for me all my life, has actually been sexually-abusing and claiming to love me? Can I be the good neighbor even when some kids receive the best education, but mine can’t? Can I be the good neighbor when, although I don’t have much, you decide to break in and take from me anyway? Really? Can I be the good neighbor even though I said “I do”, you show me that you didn’t by trying to kill me? Can I be the good neighbor, when I see that you should be getting a better education for yourself, but you can’t right now because you have too many mouths to feed? Can I be the good neighbor when countries are living in fear of who will be the first to drop the bomb? Well this makes me wonder about being that good neighbor. But you know what? I think can do be the good neighbor because a very special person once said that “We should treat people the way that we want to be treated“ and we are all made in our Heavenly Father’s image. So I feel that, since He hasn’t given up on me and continues to work with me, then I can’t give up on my neighbors. Besides that, we’re told to love our neighbors as ourselves. So yes I will be determined to keep trying to be the good neighbor, and who knows? Maybe, just maybe, someone else will try to be a good neighbor too.
-- Ms. Martha Tucker, Administrative Assistant, The King Center