Bringing flowers to the desert

— Midweek Meditations:
thoughts, inspiration and encouragement
from ACF community members —

Over the coming decades, generating enough clean energy for us all to live comfortably will be an enormous engineering challenge.

We must all remember that energy is costly and hard to come by. For example, last Sunday, the wind turbines on Rosskopf generated about one thousand kilowatt hours of energy. Boiling a kettle for half an hour uses a kilowatt hour of energy, which means that the turbines generated enough energy in a day to switch on 500 kettles for an hour. Thankfully, energy harvesting can get far more ambitious. When it comes to generating green energy, the Hoover Dam is on a different scale. Yesterday, it generated a million kilowatt hours; enough energy to boil half a million kettles for an hour. This enormous amount of clean energy inevitably came at a human cost, though. The plaque which commemorates the 100 people who died during the dam’s construction reads as follows:

“These died that the desert might rejoice and blossom as the rose”

Hoover Dam memorial plaque

This week, I have been thinking about the task of consistently making good decisions in our own lives as a similarly impossible building job. Instead of building a large dam, though, putting others’ needs before our own builds relationships and a community of God which surrounds and nourishes all our lives. However, this construction job can feel as intimidating the Hoover dam, towering 220 meters tall in the Nevadan desert.

So what can keep us at this task? For me, the things that get in the way, distract us and tempt us are real and encountered rather than abstract theological ideas. The challenge is to see past them and keep focused on valuing and respecting each other. Here, Paul has some good practical tips:

For what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.

2 Corinthians 4: 5-6

So, like those who gave their lives to bring flowers to the desert and energy to the south west of America, we are working on an important project. We can face much more when we remember that we are not working for nothing, but to share God’s love for us all.  Like Paul, knowing that we are working for Christ’s sake gives us a boost, invigorates our lives, and has the power to carry us through the times when we feel like giving up. We have important work to do. Focusing on this helps us through it.

The ACF Midweek Meditations
are written by a diverse group of our church members with the intention to seek God’s fingerprints in our lives. They range from somber to humorous and are inspired by all facets of live and faith. Written by ordinary people from all walks of life, they reflect a wide range of Christian backgrounds and spiritualities.

Each week’s text portrays the individual viewpoint of its author. They might not always resonate with everyone, and are not meant to be understood as representing the Anglican Church Freiburg as a whole. Yet, as a church that is aiming to ‘Build a Community of Grace’ we seek to practice learning from and listening to one another.

We pray that these humble ponderings add a small spark of blessing to your week.

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