I have been asking God to show me ways I can participate in healing our planet. As I read and listen for God’s direction, I begin to see small steps I can take that will help shift our collective future.
One simple practice is eating mindfully. I regularly give thanks for the food I eat without giving much thought to how it connects me to God, others and creation. But Thich Nhat Hanh in The World We Have explains,
“When we eat mindfully, we’re in close touch with the food. The food we eat comes to us from nature, from living beings, and from the cosmos. To touch it with our mindfulness is to show our gratitude. Eating in mindfulness can be a great joy. . . The food we eat can reveal the interconnectedness of the universe, the Earth, all living beings, and ourselves. Each bite of vegetable, each drop of soy sauce, each piece of tofu contains the life of the sun and of the Earth. We can see and taste the whole universe in a piece of bread! We can see the meaning and value of life in those precious morsels of food.”
When we see and taste the value of life, we want to cherish and protect it.
Another practice that enables us to value life is the Ignatian Prayer of Examen. Here is a version of the Examen that can help us enjoy and care for the earth God loves.
- All creation reflects the beauty and blessing of God’s image.
Where was I most aware of this today?
- Can I identify and pin-point how I made a conscious effort to care for God’s creation during this day?
- What challenges or joys do I experience as I recall my care for creation?
- How can I repair breaks in my relationship with creation, in my unspoken sense of superiority?
- As I imagine tomorrow, I ask for the grace to see the Incarnate Christ in the dynamic interconnections of all Creation.
On this Earth Day
and be blessed by
the holy ground beneath us
the heavenly sky above us
the beloved ones beside us
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A Rocha International has been helping people world-wide to respond to the biblical mandate to care for creation. Their vision is “for the transformation of people and places by showing God’s love for all creation.” A Rocha communities offer live-in educational internships as well as educational resources, events and volunteer opportunities to help individuals, families, groups and churches live more sustainably and lovingly with the earth and her diverse inhabitants. To A Rocha love mischief with God means “inspiring hope and caring for creation.”