I have watched the protests in the UK by members of the environmental organisation Insulate Britain with mixed feelings, just as I did watching the Extinction Rebellion protests before them.
On the one hand, it is my experience that getting bullish and aggressive and making a nuisance of yourself is rarely if ever a good way to win someone over to your point of view – even if it is a good one. Calling people names and getting all aggressive will not convince people of the virtue of your cause. ESPECIALLY if you are claiming the moral “loving” high ground.
As a direct result of watching this play out on my telly has made me LESS and not more sympathetic to their arguments.
These people are willing to get arrested and jailed, they are willing to be pilloried by people at large and willing to be unpopular because they really believe in their cause.
This a sobering lesson for those of us who claim to be Christians.
Extinction Rebellion and Insulate Britain are bothered about the future of the planet and are willing to take action and proclaim a message. However, they completely miss the value of their own souls.
As Christians, every protestor should remind us that our mission, given to us by our commander-in-chief, Christ himself, is to proclaim the message of the gospel to a lost and hurting world. Like these protestors, we too should not worry about what people think of us or how they will act towards us because we are fighting for something infinitely more precious than the planet. People’s eternal souls.
We may disagree amongst ourselves about HOW we achieve that aim, how we proclaim the message of hope to the world, but my prayer is that Christians would learn from the passion and the courage of the environmental campaigners around us.