Stewardship of God’s Earth

Weekly Reflection, Sunday, October 11, 2020

By: Ann Ramsey

“The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament shows his handiwork.” – Psalm 19:1

Before the pandemic, my husband and I were on a trip to a third world country, where we stayed at a spotless, well appointed resort overlooking the sea. I couldn’t wait to get to the beach and enjoy a swim. As I approached the water, I saw masses of plastic rubbish washed on shore everywhere I looked. Appalled, I spoke to the hotel manager, who told me that they cleaned the beach every day but couldn’t control the amount of plastic trash that would wash up. This was my wake-up call.

Upon returning, I made a conscious effort to control my use of plastics. I found it nearly impossible to shop at a grocery store and purchase glass or reusable containers. It takes a concentrated, real effort to avoid plastic, and the pandemic seems to have worsened the problem, with the convenience of single-use, take out containers.

I am deeply concerned about our stewardship of God’s earth, which affects the welfare of every human being. We are borrowing this world from future generations. Chief Seattle shared this wisdom when he met with government officials who were buying land from Native people. He said, “We love this land as a newborn loves his mother’s heartbeat. If we sell you this land, care for it as we have cared for it. Hold in your mind the memory of the land as it is when you receive it. Preserve the land and the air and the rivers for your children’s children and love it as we have loved it.”

My father used to tell his children, “do the Christian thing.” I believe the Christian thing is to actively do all we can to protect our precious earth. Stewardship, using and managing all resources for the glory of God and for the betterment of his creation, is a responsibility we all carry.

For the beauty of the earth, for the glory of the sky.
For the love which from our birth
Over and around us lies.
Christ, our Lord, to you we raise,
This, our hymn of grateful praise.