A guest blog from our partners, Christian Aid …
“As Christians, we’re called to put our faith into action by loving our neighbours and caring for the earth, our common home.”
We hear this many times, in fact I’m sure I’ve written it in countless emails and letters to Christian Aid supporters. Yet, in such a complex and interconnected world it’s hard to know exactly how we do that.
Do you ever feel paralysed by something as simple as buying bananas? Yes the ones in my local supermarket are Fairtrade. But they got here on a plane from Costa Rica, pumping life sapping carbon dioxide into our atmosphere. Should I buy a locally grown apple instead?
Are you guilty (like me) of placing blame elsewhere? Saying “what does my lifestyle matter when compared to the thousands of giga-tonnes of carbon being emitted everyday by big businesses.’’
But the way we live our lives does matter, it matters in terms of how we live out our Christian values with integrity and the impacts our lives have on others. In fact these two things are inextricably linked.
Scripture is filled with passages urging integrity to flourish in us. Think of the well-known passage in Galatians 5:22-25 which outlines the values of Christian living:
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit”
In keeping in step and following the guidance of the Holy Spirit we are inspired to live a life of the highest integrity, following in the footsteps of Jesus, a life that brings goodness and blessings to all people.
Climate change is forcing people of all faiths and none to examine their own lifestyles in a way we’ve never had to before. It is now obvious that our way of life has disrupted God’s glorious creation and is hurting our brothers and sisters around the world.
But we have hope. Following the historic UN climate deal in Paris the shift towards clean energy is picking up momentum. Clean energy can help restore the earth. Clean energy offers a reliable and secure energy supply and secures long-term jobs, fuelling prosperity for our neighbours near and far.
We as people of faith must be prepared to lead the way. Showing what is possible by taking practical actions to live care for creation in our homes, our churches and our communities. When we do, we can join in with God’s work of renewing creation and stand alongside our sisters and brothers affected by climate change.
Joining the Big Church Switch
We’re powerful when we act together. That’s why Christian Aid and Tearfund are working with others to inspire as many individuals and churches of all denominations, shapes and sizes to switch to clean energy.
Collectively as the church we have huge buying power and by teaming with specialists like the national church buying scheme 2 Buy 2 we hope to make switching to clean energy not just right, but affordable too.
Our own actions multiplied time and again will send a strong signal to governments and businesses that shifting to renewables is crucial if we are to live and enjoy God’s world together.
Every church works differently, but if you can speak to the right people you can make this happen. It might be the church treasurer or someone influential in the committee. Or maybe it could be you! You can register your church or find out more at www.bigchurchswitch.org.uk