Today we light the final red candle representing Imani, or Faith. After reflecting on the foundational principles of Unity, Self-Determination, Collective Responsibility, Cooperative Economics and Purpose, we end by embracing Faith.
Imani is faith not merely in lofty visions or our efforts, but faith housed confidently in our people. Despite obstacles seen and unseen ahead, faith encourages our collective inner strength to press forward – not perfectly but persistently, drawing from community when individual fires dim. Faith is belief in things not yet seen but felt deeply in our very being.
The fruits of self-mastered creativity cultivate more than great works – they grow faith sustained not by empty prayers but relentless action towards justice. Creative gifts awaken when used not just to entertain but to engage and rally a weary people towards renewal.
Songs must orchestrate not only steps in sync but steps towards equity. Stories told in bright hues should paint visions of an inclusive world the disheartened yearn to believe possible. Bold strokes that capture the contours of our souls – not just the shadows of present realities but rays of hope defiantly peeking through cracks projecting better days ahead.
Creatives who tend the gardens of their gifts well till soil to reap beauty and feed hungry hearts filled with doubts through the long winters. We create not only to express our highest selves, but to inspire a chorus of voices to harmonize in faith with eyes locked confidently on a bright horizon. For when creativity moves communities to step out on belief rendered through action, creativity awakens and sustains faith.
On dreary days when present realities seem bleak, faith connects us to those who survived harsher times. When individual fortitude falters, faith reminds us of the power in numbers – that together, shoulder-to-shoulder, no matter the opposition, we shall always overcome. Imani turns from what is towards what can be – with eyes set clearly on the horizon that was envisioned by those who marched, struggled, dreamed and loved before us.
Food for consideration:
1) When have you leaned into faith during difficult chapters?
2) How can community faith see us through uncertain futures ahead?
3) What are you believing is possible for yourself and people that fuel your faith?