Why caring for the Earth matters in the fight against poverty

Daniela is wearing a red shirt and jeans. She is standing outside her house and is looking into the distance.
Aduri is wearing a red dress and headscarf and standing in front of her collapsed home.

Caring for Creation

Caring for the Earth isn’t only the modern “cause” many think it is. Rather, our mandate to care for the land, environment and created world around us comes right from the beginning, in the Creation story found in Scripture: “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 1:28)

In Thailand, Karen is looking at the light above the trees, standing on a tree in the forest while she and her group are visiting the forest for their conservation class. She is wearing a blue and white striped shirt.

Restoration

The work of poverty alleviation is, in many ways, the work of restoration: to restore human dignity and flourishing. The work of environmental stewardship is also about restoration. Like restoring a piece of artwork, we must urgently work to restore all that is “very good” about Creation, even as we wait with expectation for the ultimate restoration when “the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God.” (Romans 8:21)

In Bolivia, three teens, two girls and a boy, are wearing blue t-shirts and are taking a break from picking up trash.
In Bolivia, teenagers wearing blue t-shirts are picking up trash. There is a brick wall to one side.
In Thailand, Naphat, wearing a red shirt and holding a book, Pongsak, wearing pink, Wichanon, wearing yellow, Natthapon, wearing blue, and Arthit, wearing red, on the tree, are making record of what they are observing in the forest during their class on maintaining the forests.
Naphat (front) is recording what he is observing about the tree by writing in a notebook. Arthit (back) is observing the tree in the forest during their practice of maintaining forests.

Reconciling all things

The Psalms are filled with praise for God as Creator. Psalm 65:9–13 says:

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Compassion Canada

Compassion Canada

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A leading child development organization, Compassion helps children and their communities overcome extreme poverty. www.compassion.ca