A Royal Reminder of Creation Care

Even if it is not Highgrove Garden, do you have a place that reminds you of creation care?

 

By Margaret Feinberg

[Ed. note: This article is part of our series of weekly reflections, called Deep Down Things, published on Wednesdays.]

Last week I had the opportunity to spend several days in London gathering with top theologians, business leaders, and scientists to discuss creation care—our responsibility to be intentional about caring for our planet. We were even invited to tour Highgrove, one of the homes of Prince Charles, where we visited his organic farm before meeting him for tea. The presentations and images presented were compelling, but they weren’t new for anyone there. Or  anyone reading this post.

It’s no secret that there’s an increase in climate disruptions taking place around the planet. Whether tornadoes, tsunamis, floods, hurricanes, or extreme lightening storms like the one that hit Denver on July 12, there’s an unmistakable sense that climate disruptions are on the rise. The question is whether or not you and I can do something about it. That issue is still a hot debate in our nation, though other countries have long since moved from debate to action on the issue.

I came away from the gathering with a fresh view of the link between caring the environment and caring for the poor. I knew of the connection, but something stirred in my heart as I listened and learned. Sure, my family recycles. We use energy efficient lightbulbs. We bought energy efficient appliances. We replaced our toilets with the water-efficient models. We just had a whole home energy audit performed last month and we’re making decisions on what changes need to be made to our home. We’re making efforts to reduce our carbon footprint, but in my mind, we did these things because it is good stewardship.  It’s a good thing to do. It saves us money. It makes us feel good. It’s even part of our culture to care about these things.

A better and more sustainable reason to do these things is founded in love–love of others. When I choose to make my home and lifestyle more energy-efficient and environmentally sound, I’m making a conscious decision to use less so others can have more. And that’s meant to be more than a tagline.

Does my choice to use less energy somehow prevent a Burmese family’s home from being washed away by rising flood waters? Maybe. Maybe not. If it doesn’t, no harm done. We’ll simply have a lower electric bill each month. But if it does, then my energy choices are impacting someone’s life and livelihood in a positive way. Loving my neighbor means becoming more intentional and thoughtful about the fact we’re sharing space with an increasing number of people on a very small planet.

And suddenly, the smallest decisions–whether turning off a light switch when leaving a room or being more diligent about what goes in the recycling bin–takes on new meaning. It’s not just a click or deposit, but a reflection of loving others. Motivated out of love of others, yes, some of whom are on the other side of the planet and I’ll never meet, my decisions and yours can have an impact.


Margaret Feinberg has been a speaker at churches and leading conferences such as Catalyst and Thrive. She has written more than two dozen books and Bible studies including the critically-acclaimed The Organic God, The Sacred Echo, Scouting the Divine (Zondervan) and their corresponding DVD Bible studies.

Margaret currently lives in Morrison, Colorado, with her 6’8″ husband, Leif. When she’s not writing or traveling, she enjoys anything outdoors, lots of laughter, and their superpup, Hershey.  You can find her online at margaretfeinberg.com or on Facebook or and on twitter:@mafeinberg.

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