Today marks the anniversary of the end of the Montgomery bus boycott, a significant moment in the civil rights movement. On December 20, 1956, the African American community of Montgomery, Alabama voted unanimously to end the 385-day boycott, sparked by the arrest of Rosa Parks for refusing to give up her seat on a bus to a white passenger. The boycott ultimately led to the U.S. Supreme Court declaring segregation on public buses unconstitutional.
As Reverend Rashad Raymond Moore noted in his sermon A New Perspective on Waiting on December 4, 2022, "People should never forget that the same power that gave [the African American community of Montgomery] the strength and fortitude to transform their present age is still available to us." The Montgomery bus boycott was a social and political movement, but it would not have been possible without the power of the black church, which provided a sanctuary and source of support for those involved in the boycott.
Faith is about more than just getting through difficult times. It is about trusting that, even when we can't see it, God is working behind the scenes to bring about good in our lives. As Reverend Moore says, "Faith does not always give us an arrival date…but it reminds us that it will arrive." When we face challenges and feel discouraged, it is important to hold onto our faith and remember that God's ways are not like our ways.
James reminds us to "let patience have its perfect work, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing." This means trusting that, even when we can't see it, something is working underground. It means staying focused on what we are waiting for and having the patience of someone like Raphael Warnock, who said, "In this race, the opponent is not my focus, my focus is winning the Senate seat."
In the words of Reverend Moore, "Sometimes we allow people who have no consequential place in our life to be the thing that blocks us from our blessing." By holding onto our faith and trusting in God's plan for our lives, we can have the patience and strength to let the Lord fight our battles and move us closer to our blessings. As we remember the impact of the Montgomery bus boycott and the faith of those who participated, may we continue to work towards a more just and equitable society for all.