I’m enjoying my post-run cup of coffee this past Saturday morning, when I notice something on the side of the insanely over-priced cup. “The Way I See It #137”. Great! The last thing I’m interested in after running ten miles and paying 4 bucks for some liquid refreshment, is some liberal, humanistic moralizing that’s probably from some New Age nutcake. As I negotiate the gradually increasing traffic, I slip the 60% recycled “fiber sleeve” a little lower so I can read the wisdom that I have been seeking my whole life…“If we valued the works of nature as much as the works and deeds of people, we would all be richer by far. Any ancient forest, polar bear or species of snake is more complex and improbable than Wi-Fi, the Mona Lisa or landing a man on the moon. What price would you pay to keep such treasures?”
Herpetologist and National Geographic Emerging Explorer
I’ll have to admit my first response (after wondering what in the world a “herpetologist” was) was “Woohoo. Another greenie, tree-hugging environmentalist telling all the rest of us why we don’t care enough about ‘Mother Nature’.” Who does she think she is?
Then I actually re-read. With a word change or two, I would agree with her. What she calls a work of nature, I would call a work of God, but I do find more beauty and complexity and improbability in His work than in man’s.
Why is it that my first reaction to what she said was such a “knee-jerk”? Why is it that Christians are so quick to write off environmental issues? I surmise that it is because of the extremists in the movement. Those who want to “Save the Whale” but kill the babies. Those who would sacrifice humanity for the “good of Mother Earth”. Also, some issues they promote are just bizzare! In the common perception, to be green is to be weird. We don’t want, in any way, to be connected with such nonsense.
But should I allow such extremists to drive me away from what is right? I mean, when I read the quote above, rather than dismissing it as eco-mumbojumbo, I find I agree almost entirely with it. And God did say that man was to be a steward of His creation.
I’m not ready to jump on the environmental bandwagon that is currently so popular with the evangelical community. I do, however, understand that I have been given the privilege to live on this earth and should be a wise steward in whatever ways I am able.
So after I look up “herpetologist”, I’m going to ponder ways I can honor God by being a good steward without exalting the “creature over the creator”. I’m going to work at evaluating what I read and hear for truth, not based on my preconceptions of who communicates it. And I’m going to enjoy a cup of cheap, home-brewed coffee.
And that’s the way I see it.