Season of Creation

During September we celebrate A Season of Creation with different themes given each week. This first week’s theme Planet Earth we take time to ponder and be amazed at God’s good creation, often called Mother Earth as She gives life, food, and shelter to sustain us and we commit ourselves to taking greater care.

The early Creation story in Genesis and the gospels are particularly relevant for us in these troubled times. They were written to faith communities where despair was real.

The stories of God’s purposes brought hope and good news that there was a deeper story of God’s living word amongst them. For God was their Creator and Redeemer, and as beloved children of God they believed God had not abandoned them.

The ancient story of Creation in Genesis chapter one, took shape during the time the people of Judah were in exile in Babylon (586–539 BCE). It tells a story about their God and God’s relationship with Creation. God is intimately related to creation and pronounces it is good. Creation or birth imagery is used to depict the new life emerging through the primordial waters. When the dry ground appears it is named Earth, as a sacred moment. Earth, then is animated in a similar sense to how humans have the breath of God breathed into their bodies. Vegetation and plants appear. As the creation grows and the Word of God is active, we have this sense of abundance and potential for the cosmos.

This ancient Creation story was not about science (in fact, science hadn’t been invented) but testimony, a story about the nature of God and humanity, where God brings forth life and hope to a people in exile and far from home. Earth and Creation were part the larger picture of God blessing and making life fruitful. Indeed, humanity could partake in this intimate covenant relationship where they were related to God and given the task to care for earth, and be fruitful like God.

In the beginning of John’s gospel there are obvious allusions to the Genesis Creation story. The reference, ‘In the beginning’ firstly would have the hearers remembering the story of Creation. Now it also includes Jesus the Christ, connected in a mystical way, even before entering the world as a human being, as present to God’s comprehensive plan of salvation.

On this Planet Earth Sunday, we are invited to celebrate our identity as Earth-beings, as kin with all living creatures on Earth, and the amazing reality that the Creator Spirit continues to express spiritual presence in the natural world; a presence that is revealed especially in Jesus the Christ.

Let us continue to celebrate the beauty of planet Earth and be advocates for just practices for the sake of our planet and our children’s children.

I leave you with a short spiritual practice to read the Scripture verse then on your daily walk or time outside to notice an amazing creature:

Psalm 104:24: O Holy One, how many things you do! You do them all with wisdom. The earth is full of your creatures.

  • Look around and see if you can find one of God’s creatures.
  • What did you find?
  • What is remarkable about this particular creature?
  • Enjoy, and give thanks for our kinship with all living creatures as part of our wonderful Planet Earth.

Amen.

Rev Lynette Dungan