And there is something comforting about an echo. When I call out, this is what the echo says back to me: You have a voice. You are heard. You are not alone.
If we really listen, there are echoes all around us. Like the ripples of hateful oppression, environmental disasters, or unspeakable evil in the world. And reverberations of peace and acts of incredible kindness. How do these impact us?
We know that we share the air with about 7 billion people. That what we say, do, spew into the air, throw into the water, take from the land, matters. Because of its reverberations - for generations beyond us.
I appreciate how some native groups make decisions based on what is good for the 7th generation from now. They know that decisions have ripple effects for years and years to come. I know that what I say and do has an impact - positive or negative. I have only to look at my own kids to see/hear some mini-echoes of my own behaviour.
I love seeing perennial flowers spread and grow from year to year. They are like an echo of their original seed, which echoes its creator. How are we living as an echoes of our Creator?
I think that God's echo lives in each one of us. And our task is to tune in, to listen to, and to become this echo. In this echo/eco-spirituality, we can learn to better care for each other and for the earth.
There's a children's book that I love called Old Turtle by Douglas Wood. In it, Old Turtle tells the other animals that a new family of beings will soon come to the world. She says, "They will be reminders of all that God is... they will be strong, yet tender, a message of love from God to the earth, and a prayer from the earth back to God."
You are God's echo. Deep cavernous reverberations and light ripples on the water. A prayer from the earth back to God.
You have a voice.
You are heard.
You are not alone.