Today is April 22nd, Earth Day. If you have been a reader of this blog for any length of time you know that conservation is an important part of my thinking and there are always some links on this blog to inform and inspire creative thought about what it means to care for the planet. One of the essential parts of the conversation around environmental issues is the why. The reasons to care for the planet are numerous and varied. They range from economic to recreational to altruistic to just about everything in between. I would like to do today is to write an about why I care about environmental issues.
"He (Jesus) is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together." (Colossians 1:15-17). The reason I care for the planet is simply because it is was created by Jesus, for Jesus and is held together by him. The planet is not mine, it is his and my care for it is an outflow of my love for him. It seems to me to be incongruous to say that I love him and then trash what is his. Early on in the book of Genesis we see that God created humanity to cooperate with him in the care for all that he made.
When we stop caring for what God created we are living as less than human since we are living at odds with our basic crated purpose. It is no wonder that we are less than fulfilled as a race and that the earth is struggling under our demands. When we are alienated from God we become alienated from our very purpose and mission. On the other hand when we are reconciled to God through Jesus we are now renewed to care for all that God has created and we are going to see that creation in light of the one who redeemed us, Jesus our Lord.
I feel like it is a sacred responsibility to steward all that Christ has entrusted to us for his glory and for his benefit. We can't divorce loving Christ and caring for a planet that was created by him and is held together by him. This planet is a sign of the Lord's grace and mercy, he gives us so much and so freely and our response should be to care for it, not for the planet's sake, but for Christ's sake.
One of the practical ways to connect our life with Christ with the care for the planet is to think about the Lord when making a new choice relating to care for the planet. When we do this we are offering our choices to him in a new way and lifting up the reason for our actions as an outflow from our prayer and devotional life. This is actually how we are are called to live all of life. This practice really helps us to live an integrated and whole life. I encourage you to try it with something simple once a day and see how it changes your perspective.