Why We Care
Earthkeepers Mission Statement: In the context of the broader EMU community, Earthkeepers attempts to follow Christ’s example of holistic redemption by pursuing sustainable attitudes and practices in relating to and enjoying Creation.
Why do we care? We think “why not?” is a better question. The earth is our home – and we share it with so many others. Most of us live in dorms or apartments with other people, so it makes sense to say that we take care of our living space so that other people can enjoy it, too. Our roommates (and future residents and their roommates) appreciate being able to share the same space without tripping over our messes.
But kindness isn’t the only reason (though it’s a super good one!). Two others come from what some would call prudence and what we’ve come to believe as Christians.
Think about it: there’s only one earth. (Scientists say Mars is pretty similar, but instead of rivers, Mars only has glaciers, and maybe we’ve been spoiled by such a nice atmosphere replete with oxygen and such, but Mars would be just cold.) It only seems prudent (sometimes that sounds snobbish – it actually means “exercising good judgement or common sense”) that we would care for the place where our great-great-great-great grandchildren will live. Really, we’d rather be known as the idiots who actually thought global warming was an issue than the jerks who screwed up the world’s ecosystems with their ignorance and greed.
On top of all this, we care because we believe that the earth is the sacred Creation of the same God who created and loves us. God told us to “be fruitful and fill the earth,” but God also mentioned that we should care for it (think: “husbandry” – caring for Creation like we would our spouse). We’re taking care of God’s good earth – we’re stewards of Creation. Plus, God speaks through God’s wonderful artwork – the mountain laurel, the oak forests and rocky streams – the Old Testament prophets were pretty clear about that, if we need some confirmation. We wouldn’t want to destroy God’s glorious living sculptures and landscapes, when we can learn about God through them.
What’s more, we believe that caring for the earth is an act of peacemaking. People feel threatened and are hurt by thoughtless decisions which jeopardize the flourishing of natural ecosystems. We believe that peace is the will of God, and that as followers of Jesus – the best and perfect example of that loving peace – we are called to live as if His reign has already come, as an example to the world. We hope it’s contagious.
So, we care for a couple reasons. We care about our global “roommates” with whom we share this world. We use our capacity for prudence to care for our children’s children. And we see ourselves as stewards of Creation and followers of Jesus, living under a reign of peace and compassion which has not yet fully come. But it will, and we anticipate that day!