Earth Day Redux

Earth Day brings to mind the ideas of looking at the world around us and remembering how important it is to live on the planet we live on. We hardly have any perspective on this however. What other planet have we lived on? If we lived on the moon or on Mars, we might have a much greater appreciation for the planet earth. Recently I have been watching the Expanse on Amazon, trying to catch up over the last few seasons. One of the characters, Bobbie, is a Martian marine who comes to earth for the first time. her first impressions are that 1) it’s too bright, I have to wear sunglasses, 2) I don’t have to worry about breathing because there is plenty of air, and 3) gravity, ouch. Her character gives me a bit of perspective about the world I live on. I take for granted every day that I have air to breathe. I never give it a second thought. There is always plenty of air. I don’t have to worry about the air recycling system because it always works on this planet. I could be exploring in the deepest parts of the earth and I don’t have to worry about wearing scuba gear, because even in the caves of the earth, there is air.

Have you ever thought that the earth is so ideally suited to our needs, and that it always has been so, maybe it was designed that way? There is an idea floating around in astronomy that all of the universe was suited ideally to our species, a kind of androcentrism. That you changed the laws of physics or the rules of matter even a little bit, you would not have human life. It’s like we were meant to be after all.

If you read the Christian Bible you find that this is central to the creation story. Man is created last, but seniority apparently isn’t important, because it is God’s last creation who is to be in charge of the former, “to have dominion” over the whole earth and be its steward, God’s manager. God alone has ownership over the earth. While we as human beings may run things down here, God is the owner.

So what is the earth? Should it be something that we celebrate or even honor? Or should we simply be grateful that our heavenly Father created for us an ideal place to live, especially suited for our life, which we have found nowhere else in the universe? We have looked and examined alternate places to live, like life on Mars or the Moon. Scientists keep looking for earth-like environments elsewhere in the galaxy, but we are simply unable to find any. All the while, we continue to breathe without worry or thought for it.

If earth day is to be anything, it ought be a day where we are grateful to the Lord above for making us such a magnificent home. We need not worry about air, which we depend on constantly. And we can also thank Him for the other blessings we receive through the planet He has created, like the physical beauty He has built into it. Consider that He could have made the whole world a wasteland (with plenty of breathable air), but He didn’t. He created a whole host of environments to which different people have found pleasing and desire to live in. I love beaches, long stretches of sand and shore and the many variations God has created on that theme. I also appreciate mountains, plains, valleys, skies and seas. I am thankful for each one.

Thank You Lord for everything.

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I've been in ministry in the Christian Churches/ Churches of Christ for 20+ years. Finished my doctorate in Biblical Studies in 2015. Serve today as a Hospital Chaplain.

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