Wednesday night at the Roma church we had a discussion group with some church members about what it means to live in God’s kingdom. The lesson and the above illustration came from a lesson in CHE (Community Health Evangelism, see these posts for more information) and encourages participants to think about the parts of any kingdom – the King (top), the citizens (bottom left) and the territory (bottom right). In the case of God’s kingdom, the King is of course God, the citizens are God’s people, and the territory is all of creation.
We learn that life in God’s kingdom is not just about worshiping God – it’s also about our care for one another and for God’s creation, and about making God’s reign a reality through living according to his desires.
We weren’t sure which direction the Spirit might lead the discussion, so we opened the floor for thoughts and questions. It turns out that, for those present, the most challenging part of this teaching was our responsibility to care for creation.
“How many times have I walked by a messy place and just thrown my trash down with all the rest?” one person wondered aloud. “I’ve never thought about the fact that as a Christian, it’s my job to help take care of the world around me. I can’t control how much pollution the big factories put into the air… but I can take care of my own areas the best I can!”
What about you – have you ever thought of earth-care as a spiritual issue?