prophet with a lowercase “p”

‘In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams. – Acts 2:17 NIV

So I don’t believe these are the “last days” as the above verse implies. But I do believe that God speaks through each and every one of us, essentially making us prophets in the barest sense. I call those who embrace this experience “prophets with a lowercase ‘p’”. (Uppercase “P” is reserved the big ones like Moses).

But let’s look at two individuals that I view as modern prophets with a capital “P”: Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr.

I visited the Baha’i faith’s Lotus Temple in Delhi last December, and engaged in a fascinating discussion with one of their holy men (every one of the many spiritual leaders I spoke to in India was a man). He said that God regularly sends (capital “P”) prophets as needed to respond to changing times and to correct humanity’s course. So I asked him if he considered Gandhi and Dr. King prophets. He said no because they did not work miracles—they did not control the elements. I argued back that their social achievements were much more important and much more miraculous than controlling the elements. But I guess people want fancy signs from the supernatural before they’ll see direct evidence of liberation.

In my work to write in support of the transgender community, I’m going for lowercase “p” here. I’m not trying to be Gandhi or Dr. King, but I am working hard to courageously deliver some of our community’s truths to the world.