Sheila and I met environmentalist and photographer Ian McAllister last week.
We were near the little fishing village of Bella Bella so we stopped by his place to see some of his photography and learn more about his conservation work. We talked with his wife and looked at his ongoing efforts to research an environmental "base-line" (through the use of hydrophones and remote cameras).
He is a passionate man.
Ian's non-profit (Pacific Wild) is devoted to four initiatives: the preservation of Pacific wild Salmon (placed at risk by recently introduced industrial fish-farming aquaculture), the development of an Ecosystem Based Management approach to the protection of the Great Bear Rainforest from clear-cut logging, careful management of oil, wind and hydro projects for new energy development (He's determined to stop the oil pipeline and oil tankers from polluting the environment) and a ban on sport hunting grizzlies.
We pulled away from Bella Bella and, to our surprise, Ian was returning home, so he pulled his boat up next to ours. I climbed up top the Delphinus and got this wide-angle shot of the linkage that made it possible for us to talk a while.
I listened as Ian passionately spoke about his goals and the work he was doing to achieve them. The guy is a zealot.
Whatever you think about preserving rainforests, protecting wild-salmon ecosystems or stopping the pollution of oil tankers and pipelines, know this: It's the passionate people who get things done.
Balanced people don't lean into the future and stable people don't inspire others to act with sacrificial devotion. Whether you like him or not, Ian isn't balanced; he's leaning into his mission and he's making more progress than people with no "lean" in their lives.
Meeting Ian made me wonder how many times when I've failed because I was more interested in being balanced and stable than leaning passaionately into my mission.
Lean too far and you'll fall over. Don't lean at all and you'll stand firm, but you'll also be unmoved and unproductive. I don't want to lean too far, but I do want to get something done that adds value and advances the Kingdom.
Psalm 4:5b - Trust (lean on and be confident) in the Lord.