When I was growing up my family owned a gift shop. When you are in the gift business, your life revolves around holidays. Good thing we loved holidays! Although Christmas was magical, it was also exhausting and back then there seemed to be a lot of pressure on giving to everyone. People were stressed and harried. That’s why my father’s favorite holiday was Easter. He always said people give at Christmas because they have to, people give at Easter because they want to. Easter was big with an egg tree and decorations. Pastel colors, chicks and bunnies abounded but one set of decorations gives me the fondest memories. Early in our family life Mother and Daddy had volunteered to decorate tables at church. They blew out dozens and dozens of eggs. They washed them well and papier machéd them. Those eggs were so strong because of the glue and paper that they were part of our decorating for years.Read more
There is a sobering fact facing American children. One in three, thirty percent, of American kids are now suffering from one of the big four “A” childhood diseases. The diseases are asthma, autism, ADHD, and severe allergies. Many children who have one suffer from a combination of them which isn’t really surprising considering one of the root of the disease.
One third. One third of our children are sick. What is causing these epidemic rates? Leading medical Christian doctors and researchers are now linking it to our consumption of fossil fuels. Fossil fuels are now saturated in our American lifestyle. Whether it’s plastics, fuel for transportation, electricity consumption, or home and body care with harmful petro-chemicals, we are unknowingly exposing our kids and ourselves and husbands to hundreds of exposures each and every day. Yes, they are tiny exposures but when aggregated they become a real threat that is passed to our babies in the womb. We need to respond to protect our children.
Speaker or Video program
Our Father’s World by Northland Church video (16:00 min), Pediatrician, Autism Specialist, OBGYN to discuss womb development
- What do you think our Biblical call to care for God’s Creation?
- What are a couple of things you are already doing to care for God’s creation?
- As a mom, how does God’s precious love in the creation of a child make you feel?
- God’s special preference for the most vulnerable, including children, is a consistent Biblical theme. Why might scripture place such an emphasis on care for the “least of these?”
- Should we set some goals as a group to achieve together and hold each other accountable?
- How can you share this information with friends and family in a way that will help them along their path of creation care?
- Healthy Creation = Healthy Children Bible Study
- Visit Moms Clean Air Force Toxic Chemicals Section on Website order pamphlets from Mom’s Clean Air to hand out at meeting.
Additional activities for off MOPs meeting week
Do the Healthy Creation = Healthy Children Bible Study. Start to change out toxic cleaners and body care products at home. Find out more information about toxic exposure and the effect on your health. A place to start is TedX website.
Sometimes it's easy to think that small acts of creation care is meaningless, but in fact if they are viewed as a small act of gratefulness, gratitude or obedience then using one less straw or turning off a light that is not being used becomes part of your daily walk of discipleship. If we want to be intentional about our walk with Jesus then taking care of creation alongside of honoring your husband, loving your kids, practicing the fruits of the spirit makes a whole lot of sense.
Deeper Explanation of the Handcard
When we designed the handcards, we wanted quick things that were easy to implement into your daily life, but some of you might be curious about why these simple things can actually add up to big changes. Here's the reason reducing plastic waste actually can lead to big changes:
1. Use a cloth shopping bag. Can cloth bags make a difference? Yes. The average American family takes home almost 1,500 plastic shopping bags a year. Dose that freak you out a bit? It did us. In a landfill, these single-use bags will take up to 1,000 years to degrade. According to The Wall Street Journal, the U.S. goes through 100 billion plastic shopping bags annually. An estimated 12 million barrels of oil is required to make that many plastic bags. Four out of five grocery bags in the US are now plastic. So let's do some math. There are 100,000 MOPs members give or take a few thousand. Let's say each one of those ladies reduced their plastic bag usage by 30%. It would save 50,000,000 plastic bags a year! Here's a bonus tip: if you take your own bag into Target they will deduct 5 cents for each bag you use. That may not sound like a lot but what if you saved for one year all the change you "made" from not using plastic bags? Then what if you took that change to buy a tree to plant, or buy seeds for your spring garden? See how this multiplies? It's just like God's Bounty, The more you practice it the more it grows.
2. Ditch Disposable Plastic Straws. Here are more statistics to blow your mind. Americans use 500 million plastic straws each and every day. That's enough to wrap the world 2.5 half times each and every day. Think about it. How long does the average straw gets used? 20 minutes, 30 or 40? And then off to the landfill, if it doesn't get blown away. The easiest thing to do is to simply refuse the straw if you are at a restaurant, but how about drive through? Carry a stainless steel, glass, or even have a pack of paper straws handy in the car. Stainless steel or glass straws are easy to keep up with and can be washed easily. You can even get a straw brush to clean them. Paper straws are more convenient and can be thrown-away. The good news is paper decomposes and many are made from recovered materials. If you want to do something fun with the kids, then take the One Less Straw pledge.
3. Carry Your Own Water Bottle. The three R's for recycling are Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. Some people think it's recycle, recycle, recycle. Don't get it wrong, recycling is incredibly important but the reality is reducing demand is a better act to protect God's planet. It's all about resource management. So the act of using a reusable water bottle actually honors God's natural resources. Reusable water bottles are a great solution to eliminate plastic in your life. Also toxins are known to be released if your plastic water bottle gets too hot. So carrying a reusable one can be a better choice for your kids, your husband and your own health. There are zillions on the market. For longevity, we recommend a stainless steel insulated one. It will keep hot things hot and cold thigns cold. Glass ones can break and plastic ones can have the same issues with leaching toxins into your drinks, so stick with a stainless steel option.
4. Buy in bulk and reduce single use plastic. In a world of super size, there are some good reasons to buy in bulk. It reduces packaging. If you think about all the things we purchase and the plastic that is used for protection or convenience, then you can see it add up. If we bought more things in bulk, great strides could be made in reducing even more plastic waste. So what does this look like? Less plastic baggies for school lunches, less individual chip bags, not every piece of produce at the grocery store needs to go into a plastic bag. There are many intentional ways we can practice caring for creation. Reducing our disposable plastic use is a great place to start.
5. Pack lunches in reusable containers. We have a blog post on how to reduce waste for school lunches. Hop over to discover how to reduce one of the most wasteful times of that day at schools.