When I stepped out of my car in the parking lot at work this morning, I took a deep breath. There was a very light mist in the air and it was about 67°. I thought to myself, “Ah, Oregon.” I would love to move to the Northwest one day for the same reason that someone else might want to move to Hawaii. During my visits to the Northwest, I was enthralled by the reverent and fluent song of creation. I love the melancholy rain, the clouds, and the cooler weather. Everything about the environment there clears my head.
I am drawn to the way nature speaks every single day no matter where I am. It’s part of the design; all of creation “groans” with in unison with us (Romans 8:22). In light of that, I am quite sensitive to the environmental issues that compound every year, some of which seem to cause more controversy than others (a river polluted with trash and filth is harder to argue with than global warming).
I understand the controversy because people don’t want to change if it involves inconvenience. People get antsy when the bigger issues surface, probably because they may require us to significantly change our way of living.
A day like Earth Day isn’t going to change my habits a whole lot, but I think it is an important day, simply because it’s about awareness.
These kinds of awareness efforts are important, simply because they point to a great problem that has the potential to drastically impact how the next generation lives.
If you have some measure of openness to what you could do to initiate change when it comes to caring for the world around us, ask yourself one question with regard to the decisions you make:
Is it scalable?
If everybody did what I am doing, what would be the result? What would the world look like in five years, 10 years, or for my great-grandchildren?
Earth Day gives us another chance to be aware that the decisions we make matter, and that the way that we live directly impacts the way our children and grandchildren will live. Any theology that can allow a Christian to ignore that responsibility is taking the hard work of caring in this present life and exchanging it for a fairy tale where the only things that really matter happen after we die.
I’m just not one to sit around wait for my life expectancy to run out, so I’m going along with many others who embrace a theology of present-day care.