Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Mini-rulers and Creation Care: Compelled to Action

“Rule over fish in the sea and birds in the sky and over the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.” Genesis 1:28

For teachers, there are moments of great joy when their teaching evokes a very immediate and authentic response from the students they teach. Being so close to students and their growing understanding of God`s world is a privileged space to inhabit; we see God’s world in such clarity through their discovery of things so fresh and new to them.

Last Friday our JK class was learning about the reality that some animals are, or soon will be, extinct. Ms.Hessel shared possible reasons for this happening. Specific mention was made of man-made plastics and other garbage that animals eat that harm them. Indignant at this very sad prospect and without hesitation they said that if this was the case they needed to go outside “right now” and
clean up the garbage outside on our school property. “We’re going outside to clean up our world!” they shouted in unison as they marched out the door. They chose the response to the information they had learned, and their enthusiasm to complete the cleanup showed their commitment. Within 30 minutes they had three bags of garbage and recycling.

Both the wonder at (and responsibility for) creation was felt very viscerally by these students in ways that immediately connected knowing with doing. This is a way of showing biblical wisdom that we pray develops into life-long habits of faithful living, a worldview grounded in God’s word, and an engagement with God’s world that helps to renew creation.

May we continue to have the fresh eyes and quick-to-action attitude our youngest learners model for us. SJ

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