Martin Luther King, Jr. was born in Atlanta, Georgia on this day, January 15, in 1929. To commemorate the occasion I read his Letter from Birmingham Jail that was written in response to a published statement by eight Alabama clergymen in which they claimed his actions in their state were “unwise and untimely.”

This is a powerful and thought-provoking letter that I believe will benefit anyone who reads it and ponders Reverend King’s words. I recognized many phrases that have become oft-quoted and iconic over the years.

My challenge to you today is to take the time to read King’s Letter from Birmingham Jail and select one phrase that isn’t oft-quoted or iconic; one that speaks to you anew today and inspires you. Copy and paste the quote as a comment for all of us to share.

I’ll begin with the phrase that stands out to me today:

…we who engage in nonviolent direct action are not the creators of tension. We merely bring to the surface the hidden tension that is already alive. We bring it out in the open, where it can be seen and dealt with.

May we all continue to be inspired by the life, the message, and the living legacy of Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., and may we recommit ourselves to work always for truth, mercy, justice, and peace.