As we make our commitments of how we will take a stand for climate justice, it’s worth reflecting on the courage that will be required to hold on to those commitments.
There are always plenty of reasons to abandon our commitments to justice. Sometimes it’s inconvenient; sometimes we’re tired; sometimes we forget.
But mostly it’s scary. We might be scared of losing our reputations, our financial security, our institutional stability, or our personal safety. Committing to stand up for climate justice implicitly means standing up against not only the fossil fuel industry, but the forces of capitalism, patriarchy, and white supremacy that are at the root of the climate crisis. To stand against that kind of structural evil, we must be standing on solid rock.
Edward Abbey said that “Without courage, all other virtues are worthless.” Never has that been more true than now, as our virtues direct us to let go of the false securities of the past and move toward a bold and unknown future. Where will we find the courage to match our virtues?
We might find courage in our love for one another, courage in our communities, courage in our relationship to God, courage in our sources of wisdom and courage in our traditions of justice making. We need spiritual practices of building courage and drawing closer to what gives us courage in order to build our resilience to fear.
Let us commit to being courageous enough to stand by our virtues even in a scary future.
Tim DeChristopher is a climate justice activist and a student at Harvard Divinity School.
Today’s practice is to make your new commitments for climate justice. We’ve spent the last month together moving through a spiritual process leading to discernment of what our next steps are, no matter how much or how little we feel we have contributed up to now. Now it is time to stretch ourselves and commit to our next actions to shift, advance, and grow.
Make your commitments now. If you’ve already made commitments, take time today to invite others to join you.
We are nearing the close of Commit2Respond's Climate Justice Month, a transformative spiritual process leading to long-term commitments to climate justice. Now is the time to commit to respond to climate change. How will you SHIFT to a low carbon future, ADVANCE human rights, and GROW the movement?