Esther & Greta Thunberg - Rev. Jeff Binder
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TTRhWvG ... e=youtu.be
Greta Thunberg is 16 years old and lives in Sweden. She is soft spoken—shy really—and doesn’t necessarily stand out in a crowd; yet much of the world today is listening to this young woman.
“All my life I’ve been invisible, the invisible girl in the back who doesn’t say anything,” she said. “From one day to another, people [now] listen to me. That’s a weird contrast. It’s hard.”
Greta’s fame started when she posted on social media about protesting climate change by not attending school during her country’s election season. News of her protest went viral around the world, and it soon became a movement to raise awareness of climate change for young people and old alike. This shy girl soon became the center of attention, having the opportunity to meet with people like Barack Obama and Pope Francis. Even as we are gathered here this morning, Greta is sailing on a carbon-neutral yacht as a gesture of her message; she will be one of the main speakers at the upcoming United Nations Climate Summit talks in New York City this September.
Reflecting on her actions that have galvanized a global movement to take action in caring for our natural world, this shy young woman simply states,
“…if I did not fight, I would feel bad,” she explained. “When I grow up, I want to be able to look back and say I did what was possible.”
Can one young woman change the world?
I’ll leave that for us to reflect upon as we engage with our scripture story this morning.
We continue with our series on lesser told Bible stories and characters this week as we tell the story of Esther. In many ways, I find Greta’s story to be similar to Esther’s; both young woman really never seeking fame or notoriety, yet here they are, serving as a figurehead for a movement that affects entire communities and peoples.
Yes, fame seems like a wonderful experience for many, but with it also comes negative side effects. I’m sure if Esther lived in a social media generation, she would be getting the same negative exposure and comments that Greta is receiving. People mock, second guess, and doubt the intentions of such leaders who dare to speak out against the norm. Some people even respond in hate and anger. The life of leadership, whether one seeks it out, or it is bestowed upon someone, is never quite as lovely as it seems.
For such a time as this…
…for such a time as climate change that affects millions of humans and other species each and every day.
…for such a time as refugees and immigrants seeking better livelihoods around the world.
…for such a time as mass shootings and the epidemic of gun violence within our nation.
…for such a time as social unrest and protests over government corruption.
…for such a time as race relations, racism, and white supremacy; of Antifa and Proud Boys.
…for such a time as gender identity and hate crimes.
…for such a time as rising housing costs, and with it, rising homelessness.
…for such a time as a loss of faith.
…for such a time as this.
There is a happy ending to this story. The king listened to Esther’s request. Haman was ultimately executed for his role in masterminding the attempted genocide. Mordecai was exulted. And Queen Esther ruled with authority as the Jewish people were saved.
For such a time as this…
I wonder what this phrase could mean in our own lives today. Sure, it would be easy to raise Esther up as the one person who saved all of the Jewish people, and for us to say that we need a savior like Esther, or Greta Thunberg, to save us from ourselves.
But there were others involved as well.
Mordecai, the older generation of Esther, loved her, raised, and spoke words of inspiration and hope into her life. There were others who were barely mentioned who also prayed and fasted for salvation and discernment. And God was there; not mentioned in this book of Esther mind you, but present and moving the entire time
If we re-frame our thinking then, the phrase for such a time as this is not just a battle cry for an individual, or a younger generation, or simply a hashtag; no, for such a time as this is our good news today for all people!
We are called for this particular community, for this particular time, for such a time as this.
God is moving among us…all of us…right here today.
Where do we see it? Where can we point to in the world, and say, “Hey, look! There! God is moving there for such a time as this!”
And where can we look to each other, and to ourselves, and say, “This is what I have been put here, in this particular place, in this particular time; for such a time as this.”
May the phrase for such a time as this
become not just a one-liner in the face of the world’s injustices, and with it opportunities for action and for good.
May this phrase seep into our very being.
We have all been called for such a time as this.
https://revbinder.wordpress.com/2019/08 ... -thunberg/