Recently the word and challenges against plastics have grown. I’ve watched numerous documentaries on the BBC, Netflix and online about how we’re damaging our world and that we must act now.
I myself have felt challenged to make a difference, and trying to find ways to cut down on purchasing single use plastic and there’s plenty more I need to be doing. I’ve noticed friends and people I know getting behind this idea, but one thing that’s saddened me and brought up questions is the fact that where is the church in all of this? Should not the church be at the forefront of this, leading the way and leading by example to protect the earth?
Why? Why is it the churches responsibility?
One foundation in the Christian thinking is that God is the creator of the world. He created the world and all within it… the birds, the trees, the seas, the animals, life as we know it, He created it.
(Genesis 1, Colossians 1:16)
Now God created us, humans, and He gave us a command to take care of the world…
‘The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.’ Genesis 2:15.
This verse shows that we weren’t just created to consume what the earth produces, but to take care of it.
You see, God created the earth and all within it to reflect His character. And if we know that God is good and the world reflects who God is then are we not disrespecting the Maker if we’re disrespecting creation.
Let me put it this way… If you spent hours painting a picture and you were so proud of it you gave it to a friend to hang on their wall. However a few weeks later you find out that your friend is using it as a placemat for their food. The picture has bits of muck and spillages all over it. The edges are grubby and torn.
You’d be upset. You wouldn’t be happy because your friend was misusing your creation.
Is this not the same about God’s creation? Would God not be upset if we were polluting the seas with plastics, damaging the environment with climate change?
I think God would want us to take care of the world we created and one thing I think is causing a lot of damage is plastic.
Churches be an example…
Where is the Church in this? The Church should be at the front campaigning against the use of plastics.
We should be setting an example to others by removing plastics from our churches, our services, our events. We should be campaigning against supermarkets, against huge corporations and companies producing plastics. We should be showing the world that we do believe God created the world and therefore we should be looking after it.
- 13 billion plastic bottles are discarded by UK consumers each year. (Recoup)
- 8 million metric tons of plastic end up in the world’s oceans every year. (Science)
- 1.7 grammes of microfibre are released per wash of a synthetic fleece jacket. (University of California)
- 85% of human debris on the world’s shores is made up of plastic microfibres. (MA Brown study)
- 72 beverage containers are found per 100m of beach in England. (MCSUK)
More than 8 million tons of plastic is ending up in our oceans and destroying nature and killing wildlife. What is the church doing to change this? Are we speaking out? Are our churches becoming plastic free themselves? Are we proactive enough to change from single use plastic products like plastic cups for refreshments to more environmentally friendly alternatives such as mugs or even better getting people to bring in their own travel mugs.
But its not just plastic cups, its wider than that. Our meals, our refreshments, our crafts, our teachings etc… Should we not become plastic free churches?
Churches we need to rise up and do something about this! We need to speak out, because if we don’t are we then picking and choosing what we want from what we believe? Lets speak out, make a difference and show the world around us what we can do to protect the environment that God created when He said it was perfect and beautiful.