Principle of Faith- Imani
A Word of Hope
The 7th and final day of the Kwanzaa holiday culminates in the celebration of the principle, Faith. This final day of Kwanzaa is observed on the 1st of January, or New Year’s Day. Faith, or Imani (ee-MAH-nee), “is the belief, with all our hearts in our Creator, our people, our parents, our teachers, our leaders, and the righteousness and victory of our struggle.” This day is known as a day of reflection and self-assessment of the past year. Dr. Maulena Karenga, creator of the Kwanzaa celebration, poses these three questions: Who am I? Am I really who I say I am? Am I really what I ought to be?
As I reflected on this principle, a particular memory came to mind. Last year, I was blessed with an opportunity to visit New York City and enjoy the Broadway production, The Color Purple in its final week. The reprise in the Final Act is called The Color Purple. The song starts with the following verse:
“God is inside me and everyone else. That was or ever will be. I came into this world with God. And when I finally looked inside, I found it. Just as close as my breath is to me.”
The song continues with the following chorus:
“Like a plate of corn, like a honey bee, like a waterfall, all a part of me. Like the color purple. Where do it come from? Now my eyes are open, look what God has done. It take a grain of love, to make a mighty tree. Even the smallest voice, can make a harmony. Like a drop of water, in the river high. There are miracles for you and I. “
God is indeed of all of us, and when we reflect upon these three questions, we must remind ourselves that God’s greatest commandment was to love. -Love for your authentic self and your fellow neighbor. To participate in the community – to make the world better. By doing this, you are living out God’s true living here on earth.
God, as we enter this New Year, remind us that your presence lives inside each and every one of us from birth till death and beyond. Provide us with the courage and the wisdom to unconditionally love, not only our fellow man, but ourselves as unique and extraordinary individuals. Give us the strength to speak out against injustice, stand up for those marginalized, and speak your true word. In your name we, pray. Amen.
Roscoe Compton, Member, Voices of Hope