Father Brown’s Cross on Mount Roberts, Juneau, Alaska
Recently, I went on a family vacation to Alaska where breathtaking views greet you at every angle. Coming from Chicago, I was not used to air so clean or skies so clear. The water was blue, dozens of whales swam through the ocean, bald eagles flew through the sky, and massive glaciers could be seen peaking through the mountains.
Everywhere I turned there was another beautiful part of nature--of God’s creation, but, as I learned, there are also many threats to this pristine land. Perhaps people taking this trip in the future would not see the same things I had the privilege to experience. Would I come to this place in 20 years with my children to find it all destroyed?
Pope Francis is reported to be writing an encyclical on the environment. I look forward to his guidance and wisdom on this important issue. In a talk in July, he said, "This is our sin, exploiting the earth and not allowing her to her give us what she has within her."
I will be the first to admit that the earth has not my number one priority. But after my Alaskan adventure, I realize how truly amazing the earth is. I am coming to understand that care for the poor and justice and peace go hand-in-hand with care for the environment. What good is a peaceful world without a healthy place to live? And how can we achieve peace when so many conflicts stem from people fighting for accesss to resources. God gave us this precious gift to protect, and we must take our role as stewards seriously.
Here are a few more images of the earth’s astounding beauty:
Mendenhall Glacier in Juneau, Alaska
Johns Hopkins Glacier, Glacier Bay, Alaska
Reprinted with permission from PrepareTheWord.com. ©TrueQuest Communications.
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