Contemplative Reflections on Human Environmental Interactions for Earth Day
Earth Day is an annual global event that serves as a reminder to people around the world about the importance of preserving the planet and its natural resources.
It is a day to reflect on our human environmental interactions from an individual and collective context. Additionally, it is a time to consider ways in which we can reduce our carbon footprint and protect the earth’s fragile ecosystems.
As we approach another Earth Day, it is essential to take a moment to reflect on our relationship with the planet and to draw inspiration from the lessons learned and progress made in the ongoing fight to protect our planet.
In this article, we will explore some reflections, or human environmental interactions and how it plays into not only our personal walk with God, but what God had called us to embrace from the beginning of Creation!
This post will strive to provide insights into how we can continue to work towards a more sustainable and harmonious future for all.
Human Environmental Interactions: Conservation of God’s Creation
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The conservation of God’s creation is a responsibility that has been entrusted to humankind.
As stewards of the earth, it is our duty to preserve and protect the environment for future generations.
The Bible teaches us that God created the earth and all its inhabitants, and it is our job to care for His creation.
Conservation efforts can take many forms, such as reducing our carbon footprint, protecting wildlife habitats, and preserving natural resources.
By taking action to protect the environment, we are not only fulfilling our responsibility as caretakers of God’s creation, but we are also ensuring a sustainable future for ourselves and future generations.
As we continue to face environmental challenges, it is crucial that we remember our role in conservation and work together to protect the earth and all of its inhabitants.
From the very beginning, (literally), God spoke to the early humans and commanded that we are to take care and have dominion over all other Creation.
Sadly, as evidenced by the current climate crisis throughout the world, we have failed at preserving this life-sustaining planet God created for us; and the wildlife and other Creation that depend on this planet.
Why is this the case? Why is THIS one of the main things we as humanity (and us as Christians) fall so short on?
These are the reflection questions that have plagued me and my faith journey for the last decade or so.
Perhaps, this is why God has placed this as a calling upon my heart. To become a voice for the voiceless that are losing their habitats, their lives, and their existence as the very hands of who God calls his children.
One of the resolutions from my countless hours of discernment I’ve come to recently is simply: people do not care.
Perhaps the concept of the planet is too big for some people. Because, is it not so easy for us to get so tunnel visioned on our own lives and to believe that our children, or our spouse, or our job is what is the priority.
It is not the planet- the very environment that sustains ALL of the aforementioned elements.
Or perhaps, for some people they do not see the rewards of their good deeds to the planet or conservation, so they end up thinking “what’s the point?”
Well, I am here to share a little insight into why I started caring and obeyed a God-stamped purpose in my heart…
A Voice for the Voiceless
First, let me share a little overview of why being a voice for the voiceless is an important concept as we draw on Earth Day’s influence.
While Earth Day is of course a profound occasion to promote awareness and advocate for the protection of our planet, this is something that ought to become a daily investment.
However, amidst the noise and chaos of our modern world, the voices of the voiceless and vulnerable often go unheard.
For this very reason that is why it is crucial to use this day to amplify those voices who are most affected by environmental degradation and climate change.
Not only does God call upon us to listen to the marginalized non-human creation and bear witness to their anguish, but to also draw upon the teachings of the early humans and indigenous peoples.
They have set the bar high when it comes to being the image of God and serving the planet and wildlife.
By giving a voice to the voiceless, we can ensure the global conversation around environmental sustainability and how human environmental interaction has to improve will continue for generations to come.
Human Environmental Interaction: Personal Tangible Tips
I could write a novel when it comes to the tangible actions and behaviors we can adopt in our personal lives to protect and heal Creation. But I will provide a short, non-inclusive list, of behaviors and lifestyle changes I have adopted and hold dear to do my part to serve in a way God has called me to as a conservationist, herbalist, indigenous healer, and daughter of Christ.
- Water conservation- limiting the water usage from all home appliances (toilets, washers, showers, etc.)
- Non-Toxic Living (NTL)- I believe in green living, indigenous earth living, and minimalistic living
- Ethical Refusal- I no longer support or identify as a consumer to companies that are not USDA Organic, Cruelty Free, Leaping Bunny Certified, etc.
- Wildlife conservation- I adopt the “leave no trace” behavior when I am in nature and the wilderness; understanding that other Creation was here BEFORE me and it is THEIR home, not MINE to do as I wish.
- Reducing Toxins– this is something very near and dear to me, it is more of a mindset behavior than anything else, and it has possibly helped heal me the most. I believe that toxins exist in ALL forms- people, products, behaviors/actions. With that in mind, I refuse and reduce the amount of exposure of these toxins allowed within my soul, much less my home or safe space where I exist.
- Minimalist living– I do not bring in more material items than I consume. This is found in several ways. One tangible example is the “equal in=equal out” ratio I developed. If I were to purchase a piece of clothing, then I would donate the equal amount or more. (e.g., 2 pairs of shoes purchased= 2 pairs donated). This is only one example of how I adopt minimalistic behaviors but it is a profound cycle that helps give back to the community, recycle, and keep my home with only necessities, no excess.
Closing Thoughts on this Earth Day
In conclusion, as Christians, we have been given accountability and responsibility to protect and not harm the environment; which is God’s Creation.
Human environmental interaction should be viewed and guided by biblical principles of stewardship, justice, and love for all of God’s creation (not just the human species).
We must acknowledge the harm that has been caused by our actions and work towards reconciliation and restoration with the natural world.
By adopting sustainable practices and advocating for policies that protect the environment, we can play a meaningful role in preserving God’s creation for generations to come.
As we strive to be faithful stewards of God’s creation, let us remember that our actions have a lasting impact on the environment and all those who inhabit it.
Related reading: Faith Through the Eyes of a Wildlife Conservationist and Herbalist