Just as Lent ends for the Christian folks around, we hit Earth Day and the start of a forty day challenge that I’ve decided to do. It’s not a difficult challenge, but as I look at the destruction in my backyard I’m moved to make myself more aware and conscious of water use. The county has told us over and over that the salmon stream running through our property will be better off after the project is completed than it was before. Our little bit of “Stensland Creek” has been what’s known as a “spa” tributary–a place for those tired salmon to take a little break from the relentlessly difficult trip upstream. They get to rest and relax in the relatively warmer and more gently flowing waters for a while before going back into Bear Creek and their ultimate end.

We’ve seen the exhausted and worn out bodies of salmon after they’ve spawned at Farrel-McWhirter Park, not more than a mile from our house, so our little bit of water is likely their final day of rest before they spawn and die. I like that image for some reason. I would like to believe the county is right. That we give up some of our little bit of paradise and the salmon will have an even better little day trip to the spa before they do their final duty to the planet by procreating.

The Challenge by the The Unitarian Universalist Ministry For Earth comes at a good time for me personally. I’d like to think that forcing myself to use all those fancy metal water bottles I’ve purchased will help me focus on the big picture. Rather than grabbing the free water bottle from the gym, I’ll take mine with me.

The forty for forty challenge is one that tries to get forty people in each congregation to say yes to the challenge. If you’re a member of the WUUChurch, I hope you’ll join me in the challenge. And, if you’re not a UU, maybe you’ll look at a few simple things you can do anyway…just because.