In 1970, when an oxygen tank exploded on board Apollo 13 and the spacecraft began to leak, Commander Jim Lovell had someone back on earth to turn to for help. Within hours, NASA had gathered together a “tiger team” of astronauts and scientists at Mission Control to come up with a solution for the problem. They succeeded and thanks to their efforts the crew of Apollo 13 returned home safely.
It is a great story of human ingenuity, endeavour and courage. Just the kind of story you might think we need to hear as we look forward to an uncertain future. But I’m not so sure. Today the whole planet has a problem but there is no Houston, no Mission Control, no-one else to turn to who is not already on board. If we are going to find ways of creating a sustainable future then we have to do so ourselves.
Perhaps we need different kinds of stories to inspire us now.