In 1944 the poet W.H. Auden coined the phrase “the age of anxiety” as the title for a book length set of poems. The phrase has not left us. The development of the atomic bomb and the possibility of nuclear war, which raises its frightening head from time to time, has only increased our sense helplessness in the face of events that overtake our lives from time to time such as the pandemic.
The term “climate crisis” has exacerbated our sense of helplessness creating a feeling that there’s not much we can do about it. However, just as medical and public health people have given us tools to have some control over the pandemic, environmentalists also point a way to gain some control over a sense of impending doom.
Although we are given predictions of more fires, melting glaciers, drought and storms, we do have the power to direct the future. It is too easy to succumb to apathy and a feeling of helplessness. God has given us minds to think as well as hearts to feel. We must use our minds to not only realize solutions but to work the political will to work for the solutions we know that are possible.
Prayer for the Day
Creator of the mountains and valleys, the seas and dry land,
We listen to the sounds of your world holding them deep in our hearts;
May they be sustenance for our souls and a promise for the future
As we strive to protect the earth you created.
Be with us, O God, as we seek to hold fast to your Word
So we may be faithful servants in this time and this place.
In the name of the One who was faithful even unto death,
Even Christ Jesus our Lord
Thoughts for the Day
By now the dominant emotion when we deal with climate change is some combination of fear and shame. Having been warned by scientists, we didn’t do anyting.
Bill McKibben, climate activist
You must take action. You must do the impossible. Because giving up is ever an option.
Greta Thunberg, climate activist
Moreover, by them is your servant warned; in keeping them there is great reward.
But who can detect their errors? Clear me from hidden faults.
Keep back your servant from the insolent; do not let them have dominion over me;
Then I shall be blameless and innocent of great transgressions.
Psalm 19: 11-13