The lease on my vehicle was to come to a conclusion later this year, and as so often happens, the company made an overture to attempt to get me to lease another vehicle from it. So I began doing the math, and the research, to figure out what I was going to do.
I loved the vehicle, and under other circumstances, might have taken the option to purchase at the end of the lease. However, I’ve been watching the price of gas move ever-upward, and decided that smaller would be better. Even though I like sitting up high, I’d be prepared to sit down low if it meant driving past the gas station instead of to it. So the company made an offer, and I bit.
I now drive a hybrid.
Why a hybrid? you might ask. The reason is twofold: to save money on fuel, and to cut down on emissions (thus lowering my “carbon footprint”, at least a little).
Why does this matter? Well, other than the cost saving, I’d like to think that this is one small thing I can do to help preserve the earth, and I believe that it’s my responsibility, as a follower of Jesus, to help preserve the earth.
Most people think it’s the responsibility of government, or environmental advocacy groups, to do the whole ‘ecology’ thing. In reality, though, it’s the church’s job first. Why? Because, as the Psalmist put it, “The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it” (Psalm 24.1, NIV).
That’s right. The witness of the Bible calls us to take care of the earth, because God made it, and it belongs to him. In Genesis, God gave humanity “dominion” over the earth. It’s ours to take care of on God’s behalf. That’s why churches should be at the forefront of recycling, composting, using reusable dishes for coffee hours and pot lucks, using public transportation, and being intentional about how we use our motor vehicles.
We may not think that what we contribute to the dirtying of the air or the heightening of a landfill site amounts to much, but when you put together the contributions of all Christ-followers, if we heed the Psalmist’s implied call to action, we can make a real difference in this world for its preservation.
We don’t just preserve the earth for the sake of the next generation, as important as that is (until Jesus returns!). More importantly, we take care of the world because it is the creation of the God we worship. What more reason do we need than that?
Think about that, the next time you buy or lease a vehicle, or idle at a drive-thru to get a cup of coffee in a throwaway container! Whatever choices we make in our desire to take care of God’s world, let’s be intentional about our decisions.