Prayers for #EarthDay

Yes, I know Earth Day was a couple days ago. If it helps, think of these as prayers for Earth Week instead. However, given that the carbon dioxide in our atmosphere is already at 400 parts per million – and given that the maximum safe level of carbon dioxide parts per million is just 350 – it seems to me that every day is Earth Day. Every day is a good day for prayers for the earth.

I like to say (even though I know it is annoyingly alliterative), Jesus shows me how to properly relate to creation, creatures, and the Creator. Or, as Sojourner’s Jim Wallis wrote much more eloquently this week:

Ninety-seven percent of climate scientists agree that climate change is happening, humans are primarily responsible, and it will keep getting worse if nothing is done. The impact of carbon pollution mars not only the beauty of God’s earth, but affects the flourishing of God’s people. Many of the poorest among us are suffering from food scarcity, droughts, flooding and increased diseases caused by climate change. And — to use an image from creation itself — our politics on this issue are stuck in the mire of cynicism and inaction, wasting time that we simply don’t have.

Which is why for Christians, caring for God’s creation should be a priority. It is not just a matter of science or politics, but an indication of our worship and praise of the Creator. As the whole of creation acts as a witness to God’s glory and prays for its redemption, so must we. And with Earth Week following on the heels of Holy Week, it’s an opportunity to both reflect on and act in ways that will help renew creation.

Here then are a couple ways to reflect and act.

Diana Butler Bass tweeted this beautiful video companion to the incredible Celtic prayer from the Iona Community, “Deep Peace.”

Deep peace of the running wave to you
Deep peace of the flowing air to you
Deep peace of the quiet earth to you
Deep peace of the shining stars to you
Deep peace of the gentle night to you
Moon and stars pour their healing light on you
Deep peace of Christ, The light of the world to you
Deep peace of Christ to you. 
Deep peace of Christ, The light of the world to you

If still pictures are more your style, Huffington Post Religion offered this post full of truly awesome images.

Finally, this prayer from one of my favorite resources, Bruce Sanguin’s If Darwin Prayed: Prayers for Evolutionary Mysticsis part confession, part praise, part call to action.

I’d love to hear what you think of these and/or how you are celebrating Earth Day.

“Living Earth’s Wisdom”

We tune our ears to the wisdom of Earth. It is deep prayer, this listening to her cries, as Spirit’s sighs, too deep for words.

Unborn generations call to us from the future: what did you do when the planet could no longer bear your foolishness and began to break?

The growl of the grizzly – caught in the crosshairs of trophy hunters and policy makers, who seem to prize extinction – is a plea for the rights of all the disappearing ones.

Hear the bawl of the caribou asking us for room enough to roam and arsenic-free water to drink.

The cardinal’s whistle, once joy’s message, is now a haunting  lament for the dwindling chorus of songbirds.

The topsoil – living organism and not lowly dirt – clears its thinning, chemical-burned voice, and speaks out for the biotic kingdom teeming within this dark body.

Mother Ocean beckons us to return to Her womb, that we might be born anew and know our salty tears to be Her own.

The willow drops her loving arms around our shoulders and brushes us with grace, whispering that it’s not too late. It falls to us, Wisdom’s pupils, to turn this dirge into a dance of the cosmos.

Let those with ears to hear, rise up.

Amen.

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