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Every Creature Deserves a Home

Some thoughts from Lin Ball, a member of ACE (Anglican Chrches Ecoteams)

One of the things we think about a lot as Christmas approaches is HOME. I hope your homes are comfortable and warm this winter season. And I’m sure you remember in your prayers and in your generosity those who have no homes, those whose homes are cold, those whose homes are places of violence or hunger.

Having a home isn’t a luxury. We all need a place where we feel safe, where we belong.

This week I was reading Psalm 104, some of which talks about the provision God has made for animals and people. It describes how food has been provided on earth for all God’s creatures, and not just the essentials but food that makes us really happy!

And it talks about homes. It says that the birds all have their nests in specific and different places, like the storks which build very distinctive platform-like nests in high places. Wild goats belong in their homes in the mountains. And the hydrax, a little furry rodent, lives in rocky places says the psalm.

That’s one of the wonders of creation, that God has designed all his creatures differently and each different creature has its home.

Yet, in relatively recent times, destructive mankind has threatened that plan. We’re invading the wild spaces of the earth for our own greedy purposes. We put bulldozers through rainforests so we can grow crops intensively to feed our cattle so we can eat roast beef. And that means there’s no home for the green anaconda snake and the scarlet macaw and the howler monkey.

We take chain saws to the forests so we can build more human box homes and concrete motorways. And that means there’s no home for the hornbill and the orangutan.

We take ever bigger catches of fish from our oceans in vast plastic nets, more than 640,000 thousand tonnes of which are dumped in the sea every year. We’re taking food from the mouths of the loggerhead turtle and the North Atlantic Whale and making their homes dangerous.

The loss of habitat is one of many, many results of man’s greed on this earth. We label all this the climate emergency. The destruction we’re causing has disrupted weather patterns through the huge amounts of carbon we’ve put into the atmosphere. We’re trashing nature with floods, droughts and wildfires. All this disproportionately affects the most vulnerable. Not just the scarlet macaw and the loggerhead turtle. But the wheat farmer in Afghanistan, where the rainfall has increased 40 per cent. And the rice farmer in Bangladesh, which will lose another 10 per cent of its land in the next 20 years due to rising sea levels.

Everyone, every creature, needs a home.


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