Cradle the Earth, Series Release

Cradle the Earth No. 8, acrylic and mixed media painting by artist Heather Elliott, detailed view

Initially inspired by the combination of earthy hues, my Cradle the Earth series eventually transformed into a reflection of my deep concern for our current climate crisis. The focal point of each piece incorporates natural, found, and/or recycled objects, while the layers of collage represent our interconnectedness to the earth. As I share each piece on social media over the coming days I’ll also accompany each work with a quote about climate change that resonates with me.

While these quotes are moving and thought-provoking, most importantly my faith in Christ requires me to practice good environmental stewardship. As we read in Psalm 24, creation and all that is in it belong to the Lord. God delights in and cares for the earth and all its inhabitants. God also made us trusted caretakers of God’s creation in Genesis 1. Therefore, we are directly responsible to Him for the choices we make regarding the earth and its resources.

Climate change is especially pressing because our stewardship is inextricably paired with social and environmental justice. Since pollution, unsafe drinking water, and ecological disasters disproportionately affect the poor and vulnerable, Christians have a moral obligation to show our love to others by protecting the environment. In Proverbs 31: 8-9 we are reminded to “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.”

Due to my desire to live more fully into my faith, I try to make more sustainable choices for my family and choose to nurture the earth. For example, over the past ten years we’ve made conscious, deliberate changes regarding our purchases by cutting back on our plastic, meat, energy, fuel, and water consumption. We’re also transforming our suburban yard into a chemical-free, pollinator and butterfly friendly space. These small gestures often seem futile when viewed in the context of our global crisis. When I get discouraged I remind myself that even small actions can affect great change. I hope you are encouraged to make a few small changes yourself!

For more resources on this topic, I’ve also included several links that I’ve found helpful:

Citizens’ Climate Radio, Ep. 30: What does the Bible say about climate change?

The Stewardship of Creation: A Theological Reflection

Environmental factors which affect children living in poverty, Compassion International

Faith Alliance for Climate Solutions

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