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Monday, August 16, 2010

Getting our hands dirty with prayer

At Kippax Uniting Church yesterday in our interactive service we were discussing the things that are wrong with the world and the reassurance of hope. As part of the service we put some new indoor plants for the foyer into pots. These plants are to be a symbol of hope as we walk past each week, and the act of planting them was our prayer. I really enjoyed watching the activity. Everyone was bustling around in their gardening gloves, working as a team to get the plants out of their old pots and into the new ones, fill the pots with potting mix and water them. Older church members worked with the youngest members of the congregation, everyone on their knees together (it was a great photo opportunity). Both those who regularly garden and those who rarely do exchanged ideas and got the job done. It was uplifting to see. But there was one thing, for me, which really stood out. A small girl walked past me talking to something on her glove. She had picked up a tiny spider and was calming it with her voice while she calmly took it outside. My heart warmed. To see such kindness and empathy in a child towards a creature many hate or fear was uplifting. This is what I want to see in the future - a world where everyone cares for even the tiniest and least lovable creatures as much as they do themselves and each other.

For those who would like to repeat this activity, you will need:

- Sheets to protect the floor

- Pots

- Trays for under the pots

- Jugs of water

- Potting Mix

- Gardening gloves

- Plants

- People

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Important Lessons from the Bible

Why Jesus came:
"that the world might be saved through him"
John 3:17

Who Jesus is going to use to save the world:
"For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God."
Romans 8:19

Our role on earth:
"The LORD God put the man in the Garden of Eden to take care of it and to look after it."
Genesis 2:15

The Five Pillars of A Christian Theology of Sustainability

1. God is the creator, sustainer and redeemer of creation.

2. Covenantal Stewardship (we have a covenant with God as stewards of the earth).

3. The creation-fall-redemption paradigm (God made a good world; human failure broke the relationships between god, man and creation; Christ provides hope for all creation).

4.Bodily resurrection(we will rise with bodies, not as spirits)

5.New Creation (a new Heaven and new Earth refers to a renewal and an earthing of heaven, not starting over).

Adapted from When Enough is Enough: A Christian Framework for Environmental Sustainability, Edited by R.J. Berry, Published by Inter-Varsity Press, 2007, Nottingham p43+