Tips for June
|Summer is firefly time. You might call them lightning bugs, but either term summons images that delight. Fireflies flash to attract mates. However, with so much artificial light at night, they can’t see each other. If they can’t mate, they can’t make more fireflies. We humans need to turn out our lights so their light can shine. Find out more and what else you can do at firefly-botany-girl.hub.arcgis.com.|
When people lose touch with nature, caring about creation isn’t a priority.
To help people rediscover God’s gift, one woman opens her farm for wildflower walks; another persuaded her church to sponsor a VBS in a wetlands area. Take your children or grandchildren to natural settings; have them invite a friend. Share your love for God’s Creation.
Three big threes: 1) Carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide make up greenhouse gas emissions; 2) emissions, deforestation, and food waste (systems and personal) are top contributors to climate change; 3) viewing life through the lens of climate justice, making changes both large and small, and speaking up to others are key to addressing the problems. What you do matters.
Purchase organic food. The few extra cents you pay at the grocery support farmers who avoid using the synthetic pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers that have been proven to deplete the soil. Organic farmers also refuse to subject their livestock to antibiotics and growth hormones. Organic farming practices are healthier for soil, livestock, and for those who eat the food.
More and more products are available plastic-free—shampoo, laundry detergent, food wraps, hand soap, toilet paper, and phone cases, for example. Companies like these are looking out for the earth, not just for their bottom line. Many of them also donate a portion of their revenue to other causes that support the environment. Align your purchases with your values.
Start complaining! You can be nice, but firm. When you see a practice at home, at church, in your workplace, in a restaurant, at a grocery, or other business that is harmful, speak up. Be a squeaky wheel—ask for a change. Write a letter.
Start complimenting! When you see a practice at home, at church, in your workplace, in a restaurant, at a grocery, or other business that is helpful in terms of creation care, speak up. A little praise goes a long way! Write a letter.
You already know Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. You may even have added Refuse (especially single-use plastics), Repair (what’s possible), and Rot (compost) to the list. Here’s one more: Remember! First, Remember who you are and Whose you are! When you focus on God’s call to you to care for creation and justice, it’s easier to remember to do the other R’s.
Money talks. Invest in the future (solar and wind) and divest from the past (coal, oil, and gas). Send a message with your money.
Food waste—both corporate and personal—is the #3 cause of greenhouse gas. Composting food scraps allows you to fill the land with nutrients and avoid the landfill. Explore your options for composting: industrial composting services, shared compost locations, backyard bins of several types, bokashi methods, vermicomposting, and in-home devices (coming soon).
The United Methodist Creation Justice Movement is providing these Tips as a tool to equip church members, families, and individuals to respond to God’s call to care for creation and do justice with our neighbors.
Other Tips can be found here.