What does the word love mean to you? I am sure I have ranted many a time how frustrated I get by the word love in the English language. This is purely because we have one word for it, when there are so many different types of it. Friendship love, family love, romantic love, sacrificial love etc… but we just say love. Mini rant over. However, I did get a bit confused as to how to relate love to the overriding idea of stewardship and the environment that we are looking at this term.
We could have looked at how we love the the environment but that is very similar to stewardship and respect which we have already looked at. John Calvin said
“There is not one blade of grass, there is no color in this world that is not intended to make us rejoice”
Matthew 10:29 says “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care.”
Both of these take us back to the creation of the world, and it’s creator – God. Not only does every single thing on this earth have a purpose, a place in the wider eco-system, but it is also beautiful as well. God did not have to create a world in the first place, but He did, His first act of love. He didn’t have to make that world beautiful but He did, his second act of love. He didn’t have to create humans to be able to enjoy the planet, and to be put in charge of it, and yet he did, his third act of love. He didn’t have to continue to be a part of the world he created he could have just let us all get on with it, but he did, his continuing act of love.
The entirety of the natural world, including us are a result of God’s love. The question is how do we respond to that act of love. Do we respond as good stewards acting in respect of what has been given to us, or do we act in selfishness? I guess the greatest act of love is that we are given free will to make that choice. What will you choose?
Challenge: How can you see God’s love reflected in the natural world around you?
Prayer: Father God, thank you that you that chose to create the earth and you chose to create us. Help us to respond to your acts of love appropriately in our every day lives. Amen.