Our Bible verse for today: “Maintain sound wisdom and discretion. My son, don’t lose sight of them.” Proverbs 3:21 (CSB)
Our thought for today: “Just use common sense”
As we begin to conclude our month of thinking Biblically about the subject of creation care, I want to emphasize again the importance of common sense and balance in our thinking. The biggest problem we have today regarding environmental issues is the extreme thinking on both ends of the political spectrum. On the far left they are promoting ridiculous and unworkable proposals like The Green New Deal. On the far right they scoff at environmental concerns and refuse to even acknowledge that climate change is real.
As God’s people, the ones who have been tasked by Him to take care of His creation for Him, we have to use common sense. We have to introduce reasonable balance into the conversation. God gave us resources like oil and coal so we can use them. They serve no useful function if they remain buried under the ground. However, it makes sense to use them in the safest and cleanest ways possible. Emissions controls, increased fuel efficiency, Clean Coal Technology, are all good things. They allow us to use the energy resources God has given us while at the same time producing as little pollution as possible. It is simply common sense.
Likewise, to deny that climate change is real is just silly. Climate patterns are cyclical not static, and they are always changing. The earth has gone through at least seven major climatic changes over the course of history, the ice age being the most dramatic. The earth has been in a slow but continuous warming trend now for over 100 years. It is well documented. The question isn’t if the climate is changing, but why. Much of it is simply the natural cycles of changing weather patterns, and some of it is manmade.
Plastic is a manmade substance that we have introduced into God’s creation. In many ways it makes life better for humans, but it is also a problem because it takes so long to degrade and decompose. The more organic materials used to create the plastic, the faster it decomposes. The more synthetic materials that are used, the more durable the plastic is but also the longer it lasts in landfills and oceans. Some of the most durable plastic lasts for hundreds of years. Many millions of tons of plastics enter our landfills and oceans each year. The most organic of the plastics (shopping bags), take 10-20 years to decompose. The more durable plastics (soda bottles) can take up to 400 years, and some plastics can take up to 1000 years to decompose. So common sense dictates that we minimize our use of plastic where we can. We don’t have to eliminate plastic, but we do have to be responsible in how much of it we use.
Don’t be an environmental extremist on either end of the political spectrum. Common sense and balance are what’s called for.