Yesterday’s post was difficult. I truly believe in living sustainably, which, for me, means treating the earth so that future generations can live upon it. Producing food from the ground and from animals should be done without harm. Animals should have a good life until they become meat for our tables. There should not be toxic run-off from pesticides when growing plants. There should not be antibiotics or hormones in our meat. Fertilizers should promote growth, not death. Yesterday I spoke of John Tyson of Tyson Foods. The Tyson family built their food business on a Godly charter which resonated with respect for the individual regardless of their station in life. I wrote about how his faith effected the way John Tyson engaged his employees after they backed a class action suit that bankrupted him.
On the other hand, Tyson Foods does not produce food sustainably. They were targeted on the documentary Food, Inc. that spoke of their dark, crowded chicken houses full of chickens unable to stand because they are injected with hormones to enlarge their breasts beyond what their legs can hold. This is not the kind of chicken that is good for the chicken, the human or the earth. Disposing of the manure from so many chickens in one place has led to fines for water contamination from field run-off and inappropriate disposal of excess waste. I don’t know how a man of faith can do this to animals, but he is not alone. This summer a good man is bringing a corporate pig farm to the neighborhood where my church is and I care for Amish in the hospital who raise veal in much the same way the Tyson family raises chickens.
Are these people of faith truly insensitive to their stewardship responsibilities in the Lord? I’ve been wondering for a long time how a Christian can participate in such harmful activities in good conscience. But then…I have patterns in me that I know are ungodly, yet I allow them to come forth from me daily. I wonder how I haven’t been able to get a grip on them in almost 60 years! Am I any better? No.
This morning a robin was sitting on her nest outside our sunroom window right where my DH does his notary work. As she sat there, I thought, “What a picture of sustainability. She only built what she needed, a nest the size of her round little birdie body. The lilac bush and our sunroom window encapsulate her nest igloo-style making it a weather-proof home in which to raise her young. She will feed her babies in hunter-gatherer fashion and then home-school them into flight. “It made me think of the first chapter in Romans where Paul says, “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.” My, how much the robin has to teach me about simple living. Thank you, God, for sending her to my lilac bush.
Everything for His honor and His glory,