by Cole Strickland
I walked for two days this summer with the #WalkToDivest crew to help send the message to the 223rd General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA) that it is time to divest from the fossil
fuel industry. I hesitated to participate at first, knowing that all my friends and family would be
firmly split between supportive and critical of my participating in this #WalkToDivest. After all,
what difference would one more dude (me) make in the General Assembly’s decision on whether
to call for a divestment from fossil fuels?
The answer: I do not know for sure.
Luckily, my decision to show up wasn’t based on any cost-benefit analysis. Rather, my decision to show up was based on my own restless desire to stand up and say, “Hey, wait a minute, I don’t agree withwhat’s going on here!”I have a feeling most of us share that same feeling of restless desire
nowadays. I am thankful for the organizers of the PCUSA Walk for a Fossil Free World that provided a space for us to express it.
Participating in the #WalkToDivest also reminded me of the wonders of community. I only spent
two days with the crew, but that doesn’t mean they didn’t feel like family by the end of those two
We ate together, walked together, prayed together, camped-out in churches together.
I spent a lot of time reflecting on how today’s culture of wanting, achieving and displaying (a culture that I participate in daily) often doesn’t allow for this type of togetherness.
I don’t think God intended for us to behave this way - constantly at each other’s throats competing
for resources and individual achievement, but that seems to be the status quo now. In a way, this
walk was also an outlet for me to stand up and say, “Hey, wait a minute, I’m not cool with that
Maybe one day, when we’re a little older, we’ll spend a little bit more time walking, eating and praying together. So long as we keep standing up for what we believe in.
Thank you to the organizers for all the phone calls and emails that had to be made to make this
walk possible, and a big round of applause for those that completed the entire walk and presented
the resolution to the General Assembly. I hope to see y’all again one day soon.
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