How easy it can be to take things for granted. This is the first thing that struck me as I listened to Kuki Rokhum speak at The Justice Conference.
“Take a deep breath,” she said. Is the air clear and fresh?
“Have a drink of water,” she said. Did you pour it straight from the tap?
I am lucky enough to answer yes to both those questions. And yet, when I ask myself if I paused this morning to give thanks to God for clear air and safe drinking water - two things on which my material life absolutely depends - I confess my answer is no. How easy it can be to take even the most essential and precious gifts from God for granted.
Kuki was speaking from New Delhi, India where she works as the Director - Training and Mobilisation for Tearfund partner EFICOR, an extraordinary development organisation that is currently working to reach more than 25,000 families that have suffered due to the pandemic. She spoke of her country drowning in the second wave of COVID-19 and, at the same time, under the looming threat of a cyclone. Her anguish and the urgency of her message were heartbreakingly clear.
We cannot take for granted the creation God has given us. We face more pollution, pandemics, extreme weather disasters, species and habitat loss and warming temperatures that threaten our health, our homes and the places we love. The evidence suggests it’s because we are not taking care of God’s world as we should and the world’s poorest and most marginalised people are suffering the worst of it.
The time to act was yesterday but we still have today. When we understand the urgency of the problems we face and the impact they are having on people already facing poverty, we know we must act. Taking steps to care for creation is a response of love and worship to our Creator God and a demonstration of love for our neighbour. We can do this by living less wastefully, more simply and sustainably and we can care by speaking out for justice in our community, our country and our world.
As a Christian, I want my friends and family, my community and the people who lead this nation to know that I care for this world that God has blessed us with; that it is a gift that I don’t take for granted. I want them to know that I care about people living in our world’s poorest communities and believe they are just as deserving of clear air and safe water and the life of flourishing God desires for us all.
That’s why I’ve joined The Call For All Creation. And this is a quick, simple and powerful action you can take too - to speak up together as Christians and encourage Australia’s leaders to take vital action that will help our most vulnerable neighbours end the pandemic and build a sustainable future.
I hope you’ll join me.