Dearly Beloved, Grace and Peace to you. God created the earth and called it good (Gen. 1); therefor we honor it.
God gave us the gift of Creation for our sustenance (Gen. 1.29); therefore we receive God's gift with mindfulness, with praise and thanksgiving.
Creation is a form of the Word of God—“The heavens are telling the glory of God” (Ps. 19.1-2) and is a source of wisdom; therefore we approach it not with selfish greed but with reverence.
“The earth is the Lord's and all that is in it” (Ps. 24.1) and it is not ours; therefore we do not presume to take it for ourselves.
As God is our “keeper” (Ps. 121), God charges us with tending the earth and “keeping” it (Gen. 2.15), not exploiting it or using it up; therefore we care for Creation and preserve it.
We humans are created from humus, the dust of the earth (Gen. 2.7); therefore we treat it with humility.
Just as we are branches of the vine of Christ (John 15) and members of the body of Christ (1 Cor. 12) we are one with all of life; therefore we extend compassion to all living things and love our neighbor—even non-human ones—as ourselves.
Like Christ we have been sent “not to be served but to serve” (Mk. 20.45); therefore our work is not to “conquer” nature but to serve it.
“You have defiled my land,” says God (Jer. 2.7), and we are under God's judgment for our destructiveness (Jer. 1.10); therefore we take seriously the evil of our destructiveness.
“The earth lies polluted under its inhabitants” (Isa. 24.5), and suffers because of our injustice, and bears the grief of our evil (Jer. 12.4); it also rejoices at our good and celebrates justice with us (Isa. 35.1); therefore we weep with the land and its ruin, and repent of our evil and seek to restore the earth and our reverence for it.
God says, “I have set before you life and death; choose life” (Deut. 30.19).
God, help us to to choose life: to show reverence for all life; to honor, protect and serve Creation; to resist exploitation and destruction in whatever forms they present themselves; to live gently on the land; and to rejoice in your Creation with humility, gratitude, curiosity and praise. Amen. Deep Blessings, Pastor Steve
__________________ Steve Garnaas-Holmes Unfolding Light www.unfoldinglight.net
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