Last night I had the privilege of preparing a meal for a Sunrise Movement Training. Eight young men and women spent their weekend in a small house, all but necessary lights unlit, simple vegetarian meals, flip chart pages covering every available wall, dressed comfortably for much needed comfort. They were focused and learning new strategies as fast as they could take them in.

As I waited for them to eat their meal I looked over their work. Huge goals, carefully laid out. Their biggest challenge perhaps is how to reach, engage and keep track of hundreds of thousands of necessary Montana supporters, training those in turn to commit themselves to turning our failing planet’s future around.

These are heroes, without question. They are facing terrible realities unflinchingly, carrying fear but actively denying paralysis its hold on them, opening to possibility, taking up gargantuan odds and giving in not one vital inch.

Most of us still can’t speak openly about what climate change demands of every one of us. We tell each other the task is impossible to achieve, too complex. Chillingly, some are willing to concede defeat. But that’s not pragmatism. That is being afraid to try, plain and simple.

Those young people set a striking example. If they can, how can their families, educators and co-workers do less? We have raised, protected, nurtured and mentored them. How then can we suffer them to lead us out of this epic challenge?

It’s time to engage actively.

If you don’t know what to do then let’s talk. If you are afraid to fail then join the club. Our choice is as simple as theirs is. Do or do not. There is no Try. Old and set in our ways we may be, yet bravery is ageless.

Melissa Blessing