“If your heart is as my heart, give me your hand.” Our long tradition of following Wesleyan principles requires us to search until we reach commonality. There will always be points of disagreement. There will always be points of agreement, too. Our challenge is to find the points of agreement. I propose that creation care is one of them.
The opposing side is Climate denying. To be a climate denier is to be ignorant of science, theology and our current environmental changes. Long before Mr. Gore’s “Inconvenient Truth” argument, great theologians such as Howard Thurman pleaded with us to work responsibly with creation. If you can overlook the gender language, hear the passion Mr. Thurman has for the environment as one of the others we sinfully abuse.
“One of the deceptive aspects of mind in man is to give him the illusion of being distinct from and over against but not a part of nature. It is but a single leap thus to regard nature as being completely other than himself that he may exploit it, plunder it, and rape it with impunity.” Howard Thurman
When racism, ageism, and gender discrimination can be justified what hope have we for creation? Creation doesn’t talk back, or does it?
Even as I write, we are being pelted by heavy rainfall in the Midwest. It’s changing our oceans and our ability to farm. I’ve heard a sneer or two about the corn and soybean fields becoming rice patties, but if it does happen will you adjust your eating habits? Are you prepared to give up beef and pork? How long will it take you to give up your pasta and bread for the staple of Asia?
When we stand before God and he asks us about the mandate to care for all creation, will we argue that we didn’t know all creation was included in Jesus’ prayer for unity? Or will our record of creation care stand as a tribute of how we united humanity to save the planet from humanity’s abuse?
I seem to have more questions than answers, but this I know: Creation Care is a growing movement in the United States and it’s not political (though some want to make it so). The United Methodist Church would like to certify your congregation as a green church and we want to train you to start an Earthkeeper project to benefit your community. Join this popular movement. It’s not traditional or progressive.