Loving Our Neighbor: A Net Zero Lent Challenge
February 28, 2022
Updated March 1, 2022
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Most of us in the West are largely cushioned from the worst effects of climate change for the immediate future. But the most recent IPCC report states that our planet is warming at a rate faster than anything we’ve experienced in the last 2,000 years. If left unchecked, this rise in earth’s temperature could be disastrous. And it’s easy for us to ignore the need for urgent action. That's why, as we approach this season of Lent, it's a beautiful time to evaluate our lifestyle and to seek to more deeply love our neighbor as ourselves.
The 40 days leading up to Easter is a significant time for the church. We are preparing to celebrate the suffering Servant, the risen Savior. Matthew reminds us that, "...the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many." (Matthew 20:28)
We must meditate on Christ's example during the Lenten season, using it as a framework for our own self-evaluation. We must take to heart that He came to serve, not to be served. And He calls us to this same path. After washing their feet, Jesus told his disciples that, “...I have given you an example, that you should also do just as I have done to you.” (John 13:14)
This calling to sacrificial service can and should take many forms. In preparation for this season of Lent, take time to pray and ask Christ to show you how to grow in a heart of service that recognizes others as more important. One way to serve this Lent? Work on reducing your own carbon footprint. This is important, because the poor and vulnerable are most directly affected by climate change. We serve them by reducing our own contribution to the plastic pollution and greenhouse gas that are a part of climate change.
If you’re called to take climate action this Lent, our Living Net Zero guide is a wonderful week by week tool to use over the next 40 days. Each week features practical challenges for wherever you are in your carbon reduction journey, as well as spiritual reflections.
Areas covered include:
Yet as we enter this Lenten journey together, don't let climate action be separated from worship. It’s easy to focus on our good works and become prideful or legalistic. Each week, we’ve shared a Scripture that you can meditate on, pray through and use to center yourself on the true “why” for all our acts of service. As you delve into what net zero choices could look like in the weeks ahead, may all that you seek to accomplish be done as unto Him, our great and glorious God.
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