Climate change service and march … and a voice far-off shouts “Rubbish!”

December 9, 2007 at 3:54 pm | Posted in Action, Christianity, Climate change, Community, Hearts, Love, Neighbours, Spirit | Leave a comment

Yesterday’s Climate change service and march in London sounded worthwhile and the whole idea makes perfect sense to me. Unfortunately, I was not able to join in.

Yet, a quick skim of the comment thread for that post at Cartoon Church shows that, sadly, some people vehemently disagree with any Christians being involved in such an event.Setting aside some of the more cynical comments, it is disappointing to be reminded that there are still people in this world who think that doing what is right is wrong! (Which is one of the reasons we have arrived at the current situation, with climate change being such a problem …)

In response, these words of Jesus come to mind:

John 13
34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.
35 By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

It is not easy to get that powerful action-oriented message across in blog comments.

We all show love for others in our own special ways. As Christians, Jesus commands us to love one another. He didn’t hint, or suggest—He commanded! He didn’t say:

“It would be lovely if you could, from time-to-time, when it suits you best, love somebody who looks like you, thinks like you and votes like you.”

He said:

“You must love one another.”

His authoritative example shows us the many different ways in which Jesus loved everyone, including his chosen first disciples and the outcasts of society with whom he associated.

A person may demonstrate his own Christ-like love of others by, for example:

  • marching to show physical presence and use real bodily energy in support of an important cause
  • singing to join in collective worship and praise of God and raise the hopes and spirits of the downhearted, while building a vocal musical community
  • writing to inspire higher-order thinking and to help coordinate action
  • listening carefully, reflecting honestly and supporting the speaker through paying attention in these times of sound bites and infotainment
  • making cups of tea and handing out biscuits or cookies

It really is not a case of finding one unique way of loving for all men—modelled either on Martha’s or Mary’s habits and interests—but all ways of being in the world with a heart that are equally important.

If I don’t care about an issue, there is no point in acting; if I don’t act, there is no point in caring. It’s as simple as that. (All action with no heart is robotic; all heart with no action is oversentimental. Neither polarised approach achieves anything meaningful.)

As far as climate change is concerned, it may be viewed as a symptom of an accumulation of lack of concern, care and love for others over the decades. Dealing with climate change presents a wonderful opportunity to improve the prospects of a healthy environment for God’s creation, including our descendants, change the balance of wealth and health for the better, and bring about a more equitable world for all.

A valuable contribution, in line with God’s plan for the world, is to be found in combatting climate change. People who are not interested in contributing in that way are free to find their own way of contributing to the good of the world. Preventing others from achieving good works is neither productive nor creative and is in total contradiction to the Gospel.

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