Goodbye winter and welcome spring. “New Zealand bursts with new life. Colourful flowers bloom, lambs are born and waterfalls burst with springs rains. The fresh, happy atmosphere during spring makes this an inspiring time of year to visit” according to a Discover New Zealand travel destination brochure. It is the beginning of a new season, as new life in God’s creation emerges. We see the story of creation in Genesis 1.
King Solomon also describes it in Songs of Solomon 2:11-13.
“See! The winter is past; the rains are over and gone. Flowers appear on the earth; the season of singing has come, the cooing of doves is heard in our land. The fig tree forms its early fruit; the blossoming vines spread their fragrance”
God said, “Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds
Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds: the livestock, the creatures that move along the ground, and the wild animals, each according to its kind.
And it was so. … And God saw that it was good”.
As we follow the church calendar, we now enter the season of creation. Here are some thoughts on this season from Rev Dr Jordan Redding from Knox
Doom to Gloom
As the Season of Creation rolls around, our initial reaction may be a mix of indifference and malaise. Bombarded by apocalyptic headlines of global heating, extreme weather events, and collapsing biodiversity, it’s easy to shut it all out and put it in the “too-hard basket”. This hopelessness or apathy to the possibility of change has a name: doomerism. Why? Because when we lose hope, we become apathetic and stop pushing for change.
As followers of the risen Christ, we have a distinct advantage. That’s because, the gospel is fundamentally a narrative of hope. As a resurrection people being renewed in the Spirit, we are hardwired for hope, learning to see the world as a place that God is healing, transforming, and renewing.
The Season of Creation is an opportunity for us to join with Christians all over the world in giving voice to this hope. Through prophetic prayer and preaching, we can draw the focus away from doomerist headlines to the countless possibilities of change in us, around us, and beneath us.
We may not be able to do it all ourselves. But no one has asked us to. In the church, we are part of the body of Christ all over the world. A trickle of change here and a trickle of change there can become a mighty torrent of justice and peace.
PCANZ. Rev Dr Jordan Redding on behalf of the Moderator Right Rev Hamish Galloway