Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Joy: Day 7

Joy to the world! The Lord is come: let earth receive her king;
Let every heart prepare him room, and heaven and nature sing.

With “Joy to the world” in our hearts and minds, I invite you to join me in looking each of these twelve days of Christmas for instances of the joy that runs through all of creation, especially through experiencing the beauty and wonder of God’s world.

Even this…

 …a  little bit of tumbleweed, a plain thing on the ground somehow mirroring the shape of stars we create to suggest the Christmas or Epiphany star, carries joy with it.

New research reported today suggests that global warming will be at the higher end of the range of predictions rather than the lower end. This means that we can expect global temperatures to rise by at least 4° C (about 7.2° F.) by the end of this century. [See Climate Change Worse Than We Thought, Likely To Be ‘Catastrophic Rather Than Simply Dangerous’] Worst of all, this research will no doubt go largely unnoticed in the media and by those who form public policies, giving ignorance of our peril the power to keep us from any significant action to mitigate the rise in global temperatures.

The possibility of a 4° degree C rise by 2100  is not news, but increased certainty of the severity of global warming is newly sobering. Every living thing seems more precious in light of this reminder of the fragility of our biosphere at this point in history. Something like this tumbleweed suddenly is precious because it has a place in an ecosystem that we are losing rapidly. Little things can bring great joy under these circumstances, but that joy is mixed with great grief.

Joy to the world! The Savior reigns; let us our songs employ, while fields and floods, rocks, hills, and plains, repeat the sounding joy.

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