Tag Archives: God’s Creation

Standing Face to Face with Injustice

CC License, Wikimedia Commons

I moved from a rural farming town to the “big city” to attend the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2008, and I’ve lived in Madison ever since.  I felt that I’ve always fit in here, and I’m proud when I tell people where I live–after all, Madison and her suburbs consistently receive recognition in contests of “Best Place to Live, Raise a Family, #1 City to Live in 2015,” and that’s pretty cool.  According to some sources, we are also the #1 Greenest City in America!  Recently, I became aware of information that pretty much shatters my paradigm that Madison is a near-perfect place.  The 2013 Race to Equity report, undertaken to promote greater public awareness of racial disparity in Dane County Continue reading

Renewal – A Lesson From Nature

When winter turns to spring,
IMG_0211When the colors start to reappear,spring When the snow has melted and the ground can once again see the sun,IMG_0217When the world is mud-luscious and puddle-wonderful,
IMG_0275And sunshine pours in a little earlier each day,
IMG_0222
I find joy in the process of renewal.
forsythia & oakThe fattening buds on the eager branches,
Finally waking from their winter nap,
Silently preparing,
To spring.

Spring is a time of restoration,
A time to renew and refresh.
And so it is in our lives,
We are called to be made new,
And we thrive through this renewal,
Shaking off the deadened pieces of our past,
And walking forward as new beings in Christ.

You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be renewed in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.  Ephesians 4:22-24

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.
2 Corinthians 5:17

And just for fun, one of my favorite springtime poems, and an inspiration for this post: “in Just-” by E.E, Cummings.

People aren’t the only ones who are hungry now

Originally published March 14, 2009.

As you can imagine, my job has me reading a lot of disturbing reports about all aspects of the environmental crisis.  Though I do my best to keep things upbeat here on Our Father’s World and in my presentations, sometimes a story will sneak  up and grab me from behind.

Great Nurse Shark – (Flickr Creative Commons License)

Like this one:

In Canada, scientists said Atlantic cod in the Gulf of St. Lawrence are becoming skinny because they are having more trouble finding reliable sources of small prey like capelin. In Maryland’s Chesapeake Bay, striped bass are turning up emaciated because of shrinking supplies of herring and anchovies. Continue reading

Is loneliness an environmental concern?

Originally posted February 1, 2009.

“Half of the apartments in New York City are occupied by single individuals.”

Modern Loneliness - from Flickr (Le Pere, Creative Commons License)
“Modern Loneliness” – from Flickr (Le Pere, Creative Commons License)

Listening to To the Best of our Knowledge on NPR this morning, that phrase jumped out at me.  The topic for the morning was loneliness and solitude, and for the most part, the comments were interesting if predictable.  Yes, our culture has made us lonelier than we’ve been in the past.  No, there is no difference between men and women – both genders are equally lonely, though (again, predictably) men tend to be less likely Continue reading

Nature Amnesia and “Body Building”: How the Church might Help

Must be a boring party… Photo used under Creative Commons License.

I was walking from one dorm building to another to meet up with some friends a few winters ago, fresh snow falling thickly as I crossed the courtyard.  I was texting one of these friends when I abruptly collided with a white van…a parked vehicle. I quickly looked around to make sure no one had seen me walk into the van, when I noticed that someone was sitting in the driver’s seat!  I might have imagined it, but I think he was laughing.  Mortified, I hurried away, vowing to pay better attention in the future. Continue reading

Research to Watch: How do humans affect wildlife?

Calvin of Bill Watterson’s famous comic has a few iconic lines, such as “It’s a magical world, Hobbes ol’ buddy…Let’s go exploring!” This is exactly how I picture scientific research, especially in the field of ecology.  Our home is so immense, so complex, and there’s so much to discover!  The more we know, the more we marvel at God’s handiwork.

Madison County, Montana. Shared under the Creative Commons license.

A recent study from the Wildlife Conservation Society compared how songbirds in two very different habitats, the Adirondack forest region of New York and the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem in Montana, respond to human development going on around them.  Human development of a rural area means that the habitat will be changed structurally–a house replaces trees, et cetera.

The scientists asked the question, “do songbirds in different habitats respond in Continue reading