Tuesday, September 26, 2006

The Outward Journey

I need to explain why I've been blogging so much on social justice issues. First, I feel like I'm playing catch-up on many of these issues. Global warming, AIDS, poverty, education, crime, etc were never really on my radar as a Christian, at least not until the last few years. I guess it actually began when we moved to the S.F. Bay Area. I was suddenly around many people who had never stepped foot in a church, yet had a great passion about these types of issues. As I began educating myself, I began to believe very strongly that God's heart was on many of these issues as well. Second, I began to understand that these issues could also be bridges to the Gospel. What was my response to someone who could care less about my church, but who was passionate about supplying orphans in Africa with safe drinking water? Now that I realized that God just might be passionate about supplying orphans in Africa with safe drinking water, I had an opportunity to introduce this God to my new friend.

Earlier today I posted an article about social justice as well as an article about the Christian's response to global warming. A few thoughts on each...

I admit that I'm still pretty ignorant about global warming. We started recycling when we moved to the bay area, and over the next few years began using less plastic and paper products. I guess those are pretty decent first steps, but I feel like we can do more. We are called to cultivate the earth, have dominion over the things that God has created, and use the resources that God has given us for His purposes (Gen. 1:28). I'm learning that there is a lot of responsibility with this, and I don't want to do anything that is going to jeopardize Adam's future, as well as his children's future.

As to other social justice issues, Jesus said that the second greatest commandment was to love your neighbor as yourself. For many in the western church, meeting social needs is nothing new. I think the real awareness comes with the global needs. We in the United States really have no idea how blessed and fortunate we are, especially compared to people in other parts of the world. I believe that there is great responsibility with this. We need to continue to become aware of the problems in the world, and we need to do our part to do something about them. This involves faith, work, and creativity. In the above verse, we must ask the question, "Who is our neighbor?" We have determined that our neighbor is the one who lives across the street as well as the one who lives across the world.

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