Monday, May 24, 2010
The Power of Faith
"Selling people a vision of climate hell simply doesn't work," says Solitaire Townsend, co-founder of the firm Futerra, a firm that specialises in green public relations.WOW! does that sound like the modern mega-church or what?! And later there is this:
"A lot of environmentalists think they need to convince people that the way they live their lives is wrong," she adds. "They want us to stop sinning so they try to scare us into conversion with predictions of high-carbon hell. But it's not an effective message.
"We need to start selling people a vision of low-carbon heaven," Ms Townsend argues. "If we did everything necessary to prevent climate change, what would the world look like? When you start talking about that, most people decide it would be a nicer place to live. So we need to concentrate on getting people excited about creating that low-carbon heaven."
For Palmer, who is a United Nations adviser on climate change and religion, the green movement's appropriation of religious language and imagery has backfired.And I am sure that reminds us all of any number of churches we have encountered.
"Environmentalists have stolen fear, guilt and sin from religion, but they have left behind celebration, hope and redemption," he says.
"They read science in the way that fundamentalists read religious texts: they cherry-pick the bits that support their argument and use them to scare people," he adds. "Then they offer no solutions other than letting greens take over the running of the world."
I think there is a simple lesson to learn from all this - if environmentalists who do not actually have the full power of the gospel of truth at their disposal are having the same problems and discussion we are, can we say that we have truly accessed that power?
All they have is some incomplete data - we have access to the Creator and Sustainer of all there is, and yet there is little detectable difference. The difference between our religion and their is not the language we use, its the God we worship.
Let's top asking about heaven or hell and start asking how we can more let God shine through us. Then the world should clearly be able to see the difference.