As I sit above my flooded basement, listening to our sole working pump in the garage valiantly going through its cycle beneath a flooded garage, and looking out over our flooded backyard, I think about how our changing weather map continues to send us one clear message from planet earth: Help! I am going into prayer. I pray to discover Sofia’s guidance so that I may identify and then take actions that carry God’s promises.
The call of the gospel is a call to reconciliation and healing. The Mississippi River Walk 2013 is group of indigenous women carrying a copper pail of water from the headwaters of the Mississippi in Minnesota to the place where the river empties into the Gulf of Mexico in Louisiana. The Water Walkers are drawing attention to the peril the river faces due to pollution. The Mississippi River is the second most polluted river in the United States. Toxic chemicals from municipalities, farms and corporations are taking their toll on the river. The walkers are trying to teach us something.
Climate change has turned areas that once produced flora and fauna into deserts. Globally, climate change refugees flee lands that once fed them but now only produce dried riverbeds. We have seen hurricanes come up from the Gulf and end up on the New Jersey shore—this is a change. We have horrific rainstorms flood homes, streets, and highways—not just every 60-100 years but every three years. Draughts have impacted crops on one hand while too much flooding rain has washed away topsoil and tender crops on the other.
Now is the time to ask ourselves: What does dominion over the earth mean and what must we do? What would God have us do to contribute to healing and reconciliation? What do the Water Walkers have to teach us?
From what we buy to put on our backs, in our stomachs or in our homes to what we support with our discretionary dollars, we must wake up to the reality that God is (indeed) present and ready to partner with us in being part of a movement of critical concern for that which has been ignored for far too long, planet earth.
Inez Torres Davis is director for justice.