Our Earth is a wondrous place, but it has been deeply affected by our actions as humans. Now, it is our responsibility to restore its beauty and strength. But to really help the Earth recover, we must all understand how our climate is being damaged, and what we can do about it.
Many different issues are impacting this planet and affecting the quality of our air, food and our very lives. Climate change is directly related to many occurrences that we so often overlook.
Some Effects of Climate Change
Depending on your age, you may have noticed that your autumns and winters are much warmer than they used to be. This is because the Earth is warming. What you may not have realized is that this rise in temperature is causing other problems like droughts, heat waves, melting of arctic regions, insect outbreaks, and wildfires.
Rainy days look a lot different than they did in the 1900s as a result of climate change.
This shift in precipitation has become widespread, causing other forms of climate-related damage, like floods, severe rainstorms, and even earthquakes. Although rain also gives life to and revives the Earth, too much of it is harmful and leads to even more detrimental occurrences, like natural disasters.
Since the early 1980s, natural disasters have significantly increased due to climate change. From floods to tropical storms, climate change has created unnatural nature patterns that distress the Earth. Certain states are more affected, but as a nation, we have all contributed to the greenhouse gas pollution that causes climate change.
Just as these issues could have been prevented, to begin with, there are things we can do to ensure that it doesn’t continue.
Making a Blessed Impact
Many leaders in faith are already working towards climate solutions. All faith traditions are called to protect the Earth and help it to flourish. For Christians particularly, three principles are compelling them.
According to the Book of Genesis, God created humans specifically to care for his first creation, Earth. This is what drives many Christians to defend the planet and influence others to do the same.
And the Lord God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and keep it. -Genesis 2:15
Creation care is a general principle, but when paired with stewardship and action, Christians can really make a difference on climate change.
Caring for creation is one thing, but stewardship is about making sure that everyone else is caring for God’s creation as well. God has entrusted all of creation to our care - not just the land and animals, but also God’s people. Since climate change has the greatest impact on the world’s most vulnerable communities, advocating for climate solutions is a form of stewardship.
In the Bible, stewardship is a principle that consists of four components; ownership, responsibility, accountability, and reward. This means that because humans are the owners of the Earth, we are responsible for its well-being, accountable for its inhabitants, and will be rewarded for our dedication to this calling.
One of the Bible principles most abundantly present throughout the holy text is the principle of taking action. Prayer is important, but according to God’s word, praying must be followed by doing. Consider these three scriptures:
- “Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.” John 13:17
- “But be doers of the Word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.” James 1:22
- “Rise up; this matter is in your hands. We will support you, so take courage and do it.” Ezra 10:4
Creation care and stewardship over God’s creation are essential, but without action, the feelings and ideas that arose in times of trouble will perish, along with the Earth. All Christians have the opportunity to stop this and help build a better future.
Shaping a Blessed Tomorrow
God provided specific instructions on how to care for the land, the animals, and ourselves. It is through creation care, stewardship, and consistent action that we can shape a more environmentally sound future for ourselves and the planet.
Climate change represents a lack of attention to God’s instructions. But God is known for his forgiveness, and we still have a chance to be redeemed and thusly, redeem the Earth.