I’m not sure about where you live, but the weather in my locale has been anything but consistent! Why, just over a week ago, in mid-January, we were basking in weather that was more springlike, with a temperature of plus 15 celsius (that’s about 55 F.), a couple of days of rain after that, then temperatures and windchills that hit minus 26 C (or – 15 F), and as I look out my window now, snowsqualls.
This brings with it the expected comments regarding climate change, and what we are doing to stop it (or at least minimize it). There seems to be a train of thought amongst some folks, that if we were to change everything that humans do, right now, everywhere on the planet, then we could stop or reverse the changes immediately.
This is not meant to be morose, but the expectation, that we could get everyone, everywhere to change their behaviours for the good of the planet, and subsequently the good of all, while perhaps noble, might seem sadly unrealistic. Whether for cultural, economic, social reasons, there doesn’t seem to be a complete desire on the part of all nations and all peoples to resolve this issue, one way or the other. And even if we could, the changes in weather patterns and the resulting influence on the planet will not just ‘go away’ overnight. It will take time to return to ‘normal’ (whatever normal really is!) We may never see the benefit of such a return in our lifetimes, or even our children’s lifetimes, if at all.
Yet, we hope.
We hope that world leaders will cooperate with each other, for the good of all people. That they will seek ways to share the earth’s resources equally, so that there is enough fairly distributed for all; that poverty, war and disease become long distant memories of the past. We hope that nations will change.
But if there is to be any change in the attitudes of nations, the hearts of the people who make up those nations must change first; authentically, sincerely, genuinely.
This sense of change, of conversion is so often reflected in the Sacred Scriptures. The point of the creation stories in Genesis is that we were given the planet (and each other) to care for, to nurture, to share. That point is made over and over throughout the Old and New Testaments. Everything and everyone is a gift from God, given freely to us. Perhaps if we had more of a sense of gratitude rather than entitlement, we might find within our own hearts reasons to change our lifestyles, our habits, our routines – not only in terms of the environment, but in terms of how we treat each other, locally, nationally and internationally.
What will occur in terms of our world climate, God only knows. But I do believe there is a lesson in all of this.
We can hope.
Regardless of current conditions, we can hope. We can hope for something better – not just for ourselves, but for all of our brothers and sisters; that we can share the best of what we have and what we are with each other to work towards that goal; that the hearts of people will be touched to change so that there is genuine compassion and charity for all.
But before we can act, we have to have hope.
That hope is the result of prayer.
Prayer is born from love.
Love of God, love of all of God’s creation, and love of neighbour.
So as I sit and watch the snowfall become heavier, I will offer up a prayer of hope, for you , for our children, and for our planet.
And if you have a moment, you could do the same.
Praised be Jesus Christ, now and forever!