Tuesday, January 5, 2010

a new year, a new address, a new me?

over the past year or so my values have been challenged. in a good way. as you can read through my posts, i have dealt with issues of community, money, missions, family and a little about food. the Lord has been challenging me to really try and see things through His eyes. if He created everything in this world and at the end of the day called it 'good'....i surely have a responsibility to honor it.
i feel like i have taken advantage of His creation for the last (ahem!) almost (louder cough) 30 (hacking now) years. i have not given much thought to the way animals are treated, how people around the world are treated or how our universe is cared for. frankly, when i started trying to see these things through new eyes and appreciation, all i did was cry. that made me want to stop looking around, but i didn't stop. my heart was broken. i wondered if this is how God feels when He looks at the injustice and pain and carelessness all around us. i know it pains Him, and it hurts Him much more than it could ever hurt me.
everything in this universe was created with a purpose. to bring glory and praise and honor to the Most High God.
a star shining in the distance, with it's miraculous chemical and gas composition. no scientist could ever replicate it. unfortunately, our governments send satellites, rockets and experimental machinery into space where they will never be brought back to earth. space trash litters the universe.
the incredible, healing, oxygen giving amazon is key to being able to sustain life as we now know it on earth. it's lush forests providing shelter to countless creatures and plants unseen outside of it's boundaries. yet, it is burned, cut down and bull dozed so that the land can be mined, built up and profited upon.
animals, created so skillfully and diverse, are a beautiful example of God's creativity. some are so sophisticated that they have real communities; they mourn the loss of a friend; they show affection; they build tools. however, too many are seen as expendable and too low on the food chain to care about. they are poached, abused, neglected and eradicated.
have we really taken our God-given domain over the earth too far? i think so. when i really take a look at how we view the world, my heart sinks and i feel so ashamed. it's not enough for me to feel bad about what i see. it's like when i consider salvation; it's a great thing i am saved, but if i don't share the good news with others then the victory is kind of hollow.
this burden has caused me to change the way i think about a lot of things, and come to terms with the fact that i cannot change the minds of every person on earth. all i can do is change my actions and try to consider how my choices impact the world around me. i am not perfect, never will be until glory.
things that i have committed to doing going forward, as long as i am able to:
  • being a better steward of the earth's resources through reducing energy and water usage
  • supporting farmers who practice humane animal husbandry and ecologically sound food production
  • striving to eat foods that God provided for me, not 'frankenfood' that barely resembles what it's supposed to be and has little or no nutritional value left
  • living more simply by cutting back on purchases of brand new items and carefully considering what new (or new to me) purchases enter the house. paring down the possessions will leave more time and money for Kingdom worthy causes

i say these things not to make you feel bad about anything, or to try and 'convict' you of something you have not yet felt the Spirit leading you in. i do want to help you consider these things though. my prayer is that God will be glorified through our actions, and that He would soften our hearts toward His creation.

what are your thoughts?

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