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BY KATHRYN BERG

May 5, 2021
President Biden has considered climate change in all his plans, a necessity for our future survival.
Photo credit: Evan Vucci | AP Photo
At a recent virtual summit and in his first Joint Address to Congress, President Biden linked his Jobs Plan to his plan to combat climate change, casting the reduction in global warming as both a moral and economic imperative. - via The New York Times
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted... – Ecclesiastes 3:1-2
As President Biden tries to convince Americans and the rest of the world that combating climate change is in their economic interest, it occurs to me that it is also in our spiritual interest. Absent a significant reduction in global emissions, scientists tell us that the seasons, already altered, will continue to change, with summers growing longer and winters growing shorter.

A recent study found that if climate change continues apace, by the end of this century summers in the Northern Hemisphere could last nearly six months, while winters could be less than two. The health, environmental, and agricultural implications of those changes would be enormous; the spiritual ones near overwhelming. 
 
Seasons are an essential part of life; they set the rhythm of our souls. After living in Houston for most of my life, I moved to New York seven years ago. There was much I loved about my new home, but nothing more than having four full seasons. That first year, I felt like my soul was remembering the essential wisdom of Ecclesiastes: to every thing there is a season. There is something good and right about having a time to grow and a time to go dormant. We need it. Our souls need it.

Years ago I came across a beautiful passage in May Sarton’s Journal of a Solitude:


I think of the trees and how simply they let go, let fall the riches of a season, how without grief (it seems) they can let go and go deep into their roots for renewal and sleep.... Imitate the trees. Learn to lose in order to recover, and remember that nothing stays the same for long, not even pain, psychic pain.

As we work to pass legislation to save our planet, we will be saving ourselves in the process.
Take a walk today and notice the world around you. See what is in bud and what’s in full bloom. Breathe in the scent of flowers and listen for the buzzing of bees. Let it fill your soul and be grateful.
God, thank you for the seasons and the wisdom they impart. Help us quiet our souls and listen to the lessons of the Earth.
Earth teach me humility 
   as blossoms are humble with beginning...
Earth teach me resignation
   as the leaves which die in the fall.
Earth teach me regeneration
   as the seed which rises in the spring.
Earth teach me to forget myself
   as melted snow forgets its life.
Earth teach me to remember kindness
   as dry fields weep with rain.

Amen.
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