I always had an interest in ‘saving the environment’.
Back in 2004, I remember the first time I was exposed to the term ‘global warming’. I saw images of polar caps melting and how it affected the polar bears and wildlife. It left an impression on me and unlocked a feeling that I had to do something about it. It was a feeling in me that is hard to describe.
In 2011, when I was studying accounting in school, I saw my friends using one side of the paper and throwing it away after. That very action spurred me to collect the paper from them in a bid to save these resources and use them myself. I was known as ‘the paper girl’.
That was the start of my sustainability journey. It carried on — with me recycling at home, applying to study environmental science (which I didn’t manage to get into), and promising myself that while I was studying accounting at university, I will participate in activities related to sustainability.
I must admit, I grew up in a family that has differing religious beliefs and I had not been attending church since young. My best friend introduced me to our church, and I attended services on and off for about two years.
When I started university studies, with my university being located near our church, I decided to go back to attending service. I also decided to join a Small Group through Alpha to develop a stronger relationship with God.
I still remember that one particular session when we had to do a test to find out our spiritual gifts. When my results showed Creation Care, it was like a mini light bulb went off in my head.
After all these years, I had finally found the word for this unexplainable feeling I have towards the environment — burning. It was a burning in my heart that never went away or got extinguished. I finally saw how everything worked out in God’s plan, and everything that I experienced eventually led me to kick-start my own sustainability start-up.
I am not strong in my biblical foundation, but I am always taking small steps to learn more about the Bible and develop the relationship I have with God. Just a few days ago, I set out to read the Bible again, and it seems like reading Genesis came in time for this sharing of mine.
How perfect is this timing? The following verses stood out to me because they seem to be sharing with us the duty we have when we were made — a timely reminder for me.
Genesis 1:26 — Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”
Genesis 1:28 — God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”
Genesis 1:29 — Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food.
Genesis 1:30 — And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds in the sky and all the creatures that move along the ground—everything that has the breath of life in it—I give every green plant for food.” And it was so.
In my own interpretation, it seems that we were given this important responsibility to take care of the earth and all creation in it.
It made me wonder — have we truly been taking care of it as God has entrusted us to do?
In your own way, you can practise creation care through sustainability, for example:
- Reduce unnecessary personal consumption.
Always evaluate if you truly need an item or is it purely a want.
- Bring Your Own.
Reduce personal disposable waste as Singapore’s only landfill is expected to be filled up by 2035
- Immerse yourself in nature.
If you do not spend time appreciating creation, how can you truly enjoy its beauty?
- Contribute to or volunteer for environmental projects.
- Buy second hand if you can, to save resources.
- Practise the 5Rs – Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Rot (Compost)
- Take short showers and use a cooler water temperature.
Today, would you take the first step to be a steward of this beautiful earth that He has created? No step is too small, and the above tips are some ways you can care for our creation!
Read also: Creation Care: What can you do?