Green Stewardship

A friend of mine posted a blog with her acceptance of a challenge from another friend of hers:
“Challenge of the Upmost Kind:”
For 365 days I will purchase only handmade or second hand goods for my home and closet.
I pledge to engage my creativity to discover what it means to live simply and live often.

This is an awesome concept. I think I decided a few months back that I could probably never buy another article of clothing and make it through the rest of my life. My current weakness is college t-shirts, hoodies, & caps. I will try to do better. I think we could all get by perfectly fine with fewer new things and the earth would certainly do better with us consuming less.

I’ve been trying to think through the implications for trying to do this everywhere. I know a very green-minded couple that take their own cups & eating utensils for use at places that use disposable products. They even have glass straws. Going another step further, like using a real napkin, seems like a hassle but people used to carry a handkerchief and it seemed to work out just fine. To make it easy and portable we could use a bigger cup with a lid to hold your drinking cup, straw, knife, spoon, fork, & napkin. It would be a more complete and re-usable version of the little plastic bag, with plastic utensils & a paper napkin. Pack it up at the end of your meal and wash the stuff at home.

Another thing to try is carrying a refillable bottle for water instead of bottled water. You CAN recycle, but DO you? Using less stuff in the first place is probably a better way to go. We use a filtering pitcher at home and refill bottles that we keep in the refrigerator. Fresh, cold water, ready to go. Part of the packing list for our Mid-Winter Retreats this year is a “Refillable water bottle.” We have plenty of real coffee mugs at church, but every Sunday I see people walking around with throw-away cups. At our Youth meals on Wednesday and Sunday, we use real plates, bowls, cups, and utensils which we wash afterwards.

If we use less stuff, there is less to throw away.
I remember seeing a poster a while back that showed an overflowing trash can with the caption:
“When you throw something away, what does away mean?”

I’ve also seen a picture of a disposable, plastic spoon with the caption:
“It’s pretty amazing that our society has reached a point where the effort necessary to extract oil from the ground, ship it to a refinery, turn it into plastic, shape it appropriately, ship it to a store, buy it, and bring it home is considered to be less effort than to just wash the spoon when you’re done with it.

The current popularity of ideas like “Being Green” and “Environmentally-Friendly” fit in very well with the theology of stewardship and taking care of what God has blessed us with. Every step we take to “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” into everyday thinking, planning, and practice can be a step further in our discipleship. Try a little something every week.

Be Blessed!


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What’s this then?

I've had a strange relationship with faith for as long as I can remember. My journey has gone from doing what I was told, to questioning, to doubting, to abandon, to wonder, to play along, to work against, to open up, to change, to embrace, to wonder, to doubt, to work towards, and to keep searching for better answers. Our various understandings of faith are deeply personal. Sharing those understandings can be very helpful to ourselves as well as others.

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