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Because we only have one planet

January 25, 2015

Ponder this question for a moment. What is more important – praying or reading your Bible? Of course, it’s a really silly question. Both of these are vital parts of what it means to have a thriving relationship with our loving creator God. We would not want one without the other.

It’s the same when we ask the question about what is more important, loving God or loving our neighbour? Both are clear and interconnected commandments (Mark 12:28-34).

We share the planet with our neighbours, and not just the ones who live next door to us. If we damage the environment, it’s our global neighbours who suffer. So, if we want to fully love our neighbours we must care for creation too.

Concern for future generations

I’m convinced that regardless of who we are, or what we own, we all have things that we love and that we cherish. The Bible states that the earth is the Lord’s and everything in it (Psalm 24). However, if we all carry on living the way we are, will our future generations be able to cherish the wonders of God’s creation?

Extreme poverty has continued to decrease and while that trend may be set to continue in the short term, the reality is we are more unequal and the planet is more damaged. In the UK we are currently living as if we had three planet earths.

Living beyond our means

In our progressive, high-tech society, we are living beyond our means. Put simply we only have one planet and we are destroying it. And it is the global poor who are feeling and will increasingly feel the impacts of climate change the most. However recent flooding in the UK also highlights this is a problem that is close to home too.

Is this really the future that we desire? It really doesn’t have to be this way. Are we also called by God to care for his planet and the people who depend on it? What can we do to play a part in making a difference?

Four simple things we can do, today

We can pray – The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it (Psalm 24). We need to pray that we, and our leaders, come to realise this afresh and to care better for all that God has created.

We can campaignwith the 2015 General Election only months away, you could write to your MP to discuss these issues. We are partnering with an initiative called Hope for the Future which is an ecumenical, nationwide campaign to encourage and equip individuals, churches and groups to lobby their MP on climate change. 

We can live differentlyour actions and lifestyle are an important part of our discipleship. What one thing could you do to make a change? Could you fly less, eat less meat, switch to renewable energy or aim to waste less food.

We can share more and consume lessStreetbank is a great initiative that encourages us to share more and buy less. Do we all really need to keep buying into the consumer dream?

Maybe you could make a choice to do just one of those things today and encourage someone else to do the same. Together we can live lives that are both simpler and fuller, pointing towards a better future for all of creation.

The original that inspired this post first appeared in an article in Tearfund’s Tear Times Magazine and also on the Rhythms website.

One Comment leave one →
  1. January 25, 2015 10:22 pm

    Reblogged this on matt's musings .

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