Tag Archives: singapore

Singapore Students take Creation Care Seriously

We are often asked if all of our work at Care of Creation is making a difference in the world.  Are people listening? If so, what are they doing about it?  The following report out of Singapore by way of the IFES Prayerline newsletter answers that question.  Yes, people are paying attention.  And they are developing their own movements along the way!

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So you’ve just attended a conference or camp. The fellowship was fantastic! The worship was amazing! You’re excited and enthusiastic about the future!

But then… back to reality. There are essays to write, problems with relationships, families to keep happy, fun times and difficult times. The conference excitement and the lessons learned start to grow dim.

FES Singapore students are determined this will not happen to them. They want a recent equipping conference to be just the beginning of challenge and change in their lives. At the close of the conference they wrote their pledges on origami paper, folded them into aeroplanes, and flew them. Then they all picked up a plane and committed to pray for the person and their pledge.

They have also organised a follow-up journey together. Their aim is to bring ‘organic, self-propagating, bottom-up change’. Local projects focus on topics discussed at the conference, such as migrant workers, social media, social entrepreneurship and conversations in the public square. Two projects that will be promoted nationally focus on rest and creation care.

One of these projects centres around Psalm 24:1-2 – ‘The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it; for he founded it upon the seas and established it upon the waters.’ If we really believe this verse, FES asks, how will its truth affect our lives? How can we be responsible caretakers of God’s world?

Here are three suggestions:

1. Spend time outdoors.
As a community, explore and enjoy the wonders of God’s creation. If you take time to be ‘in’ the natural world, you will see what a marvellous gift it is. This will help you want to take care of it.

2. Stop pursuing ‘gadgetry’.
Constantly buying new devices may be a form of idolatry. Furthermore, only a small percentage of discarded items are recycled, creating mountains of e-waste – over 3.4 million tons in the US in 2012 alone! Sadly, poor countries are importing e-waste in order to recover the valuable bits, but the salvage process creates hazardous liquids and gases that are impacting the health of people and the environment.

3. Minimise wastage.
If you buy only what you need, you will waste less. This equates to a smaller carbon footprint, but is also being a good steward of resources – all part of loving our neighbour.

Another initiative is called Sleep Singapore Sleep. Students are finding creative ways to encourage themselves and others to get proper rest in order to better deal with stress. As the university year starts they will give out inflatable pillows to incoming students with a verse from Proverbs written on them: ‘When you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet’ (3:24). They want to work with the student affairs department in the university to open discussions about meaningful rest in a stressful environment.

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Keep up the good work, Singapore!

A New One Per Cent

About 3.7 million Americans live within a few feet of high tide and risk being hit by more frequent coastal flooding in coming decades because of the sea level rise caused by global warming, according to new research.

If the pace of the rise accelerates as much as expected, researchers found, coastal flooding at levels that were once exceedingly rare could become an every-few-years occurrence by the middle of this century.

Thus begins an important article in this morning’s New York Times summarizing new research on climate change and sea level rise as it will affect the United States.  The research is the work of Climate Central, a think tank in New Jersey focusing on both original  research and dissemination of the work of other climate scientists.  They have produced a very cool web page summarizing the results of this latest study that is worth taking a look at (I’ve embedded the map itself below – take a look).

Some highlights from the NY Times article: Continue reading

Dateline: Singapore (continued)

via Flicker CC License - click for original

[This is part II of an extended post of observations gleaned during my current visit to Singapore.  See part I here.]

We left off with this statement: “this [Singaporean] miracle is more fragile than it appears.  It’s economic, ecological and political foundations are crumbling.  It would be surprising, to say the least, if the Singapore of 50 or 100 years from now was the same miraculous place it is today.”

Let’s unpack that a bit. Continue reading

Dateline: Singapore

via Flickr CC License - click for original

My wife Susanna and I are in the middle of a two week visit to Singapore.  This is an unusually long and delightfully leisurely visit compared with most of my overseas trips.  Because our youngest daughter lives and works here, we’ve come to see and experience her world as well as to share the creation care message in two conferences this week – which is why I’ve been able to experience and explore the city in a more relaxed manner than is usually possible.  These are some of my impressions after five days here – anecdotal, to be sure, but still valuable, I think. Continue reading