Thursday, January 29, 2009
This past week while driving through some of the neighborhoods on St. Simons Island, I found myself suddenly becoming aware of Psalms 24:1 which as you know reads, "The earth is the Lord's and all that is in it, the world and those who live in it..." And every time I found myself bumping up against this Word, I found myself thinking, "Really?" Everything I was seeing pointed to another possibility. While there is still much left, it seemed that every piece of ground which was not standing in water had a house on it. An island is a finite thing and I wondered how many more can be built before someone has to say, "There is no more land." Houses were everywhere. And across the causeway to the mainland there was always a steady stream of automobiles ferrying people from home to work and back again. As I rode around looking and thinking I wondered if we have come to the place where what we really believe is, "The earth is ours and all that is in it..."
Of course, it is not just a possibility for island dwellers. To think such a thing is a possibility for all of us. It seems that our culture is such a greedy devouring culture. Having enough is not an option when there is more to be possessed. I left the island without a real answer. I kept wondering what is going to happen to us.
And then I saw the answer on the side of the road. The answer was not on a sign. It was not seen by observing the sun lighting up the edge of dark gray clouds. The answer was in the form of a young woman who had parked her car by the side of the road. Off in that space between asphalt and trees, she was picking up someone else's trash. As I sped by, the Word came again that there are still those who are in this world, but not of it. There are still those who know that it belongs to God and we are just here for a time as caretakers. Miles down the road I realized what I should have done. I should have stopped and helped. There was enough trash in that one place for more than one person.