Happy New Year! I hope your new year is filled with answered prayers and dreams come true! I hope 2022 brings you good health and life-giving relationships.
I love New Year’s Day. It’s the only day of year when we intentionally let go of the past and look forward to all that could happen in the year to come. It’s the day of the year when we are the most hopeful and motivated. We set goals and build new habits…we resolve to exercise or eat healthier…we commit to getting more sleep or reading more…we plan to journal more or drink less…we dream of what we could accomplish in our work lives or plan for a new adventure.
This is a new year, a fresh start…this is YOUR new year, YOUR fresh start. This is the year you will get married or have a baby or go on a first date…this is the year you will graduate or retire…this is the year you will get promoted or start a new business…this is the year you will get healthy or take a dream trip…this is the year you will PR a race or run your first 5k.
Whatever it is you’re dreaming about for 2022, this is YOUR year, and it’s full of hope and possibility!
I can’t wait to see/ hear about all that God does in and through your life this year because I believe in you. I am standing with you and cheering you on the whole way! I also have dreams, goals, and visions of new habits for 2022. Some of mine include getting back on track after a long illness and then a long injury kept me from running, building a new business that I started in July, and taking another step toward caring for the environment in my everyday living. I want to invite you along.
You see, a little over 2 years ago I heard a young, brilliant, beautiful lady say, “One day the planet will be a mess to live on and the people who made it that way will not be here to experience it, so I’m going to do what I can to change that.”
Holy moly! Her statement struck a chord deep within me. She was right. And not only that, but I was a part of the problem. Ouch. So, I began a journey to learn things about protecting the planet because the only way we can do better is to know better. I watched documentaries, I read, and I began conversations with people who were further along in their journey than me. After a couple decades of eating vegetarian, I made the leap to vegan. That was my first step. Now, before you check out, hear me, I understand that not everyone can do everything. I understand that not everyone can become a vegan for one reason or another. I’m not trying to convert you (although I would encourage you to try eating vegan just one day a week). I love you exactly as you are right now AND although it’s true that none of us can do everything, it’s also true that all of us can do something. And we should.
There are about a gazillion ways to contribute to the efforts to care for the earth and therefore each other.
Learn. Read. Listen. Ask questions. Know better so that you can do better. Not because it’s trending right now and all the cool kids are doing it but because every human with breath in their lungs, including you, was given…tasked…blessed with caring for this planet. Wait, what? That’s right. God created everything and just like you want to take care of the things you have created (i.e., children, marriages, homes, businesses, etc)
God wants His creation to be taken care of as well.
In Genesis, God said,
“Let us make human beings in our image, make them reflecting our nature So they can be responsible for the fish in the sea, the birds in the air, the cattle, And, yes, Earth itself, and every animal that moves on the face of Earth.”
We go on to read: God created human beings; he created them godlike, Reflecting God’s nature. He created them male and female. God blessed them: “Prosper! Reproduce! Fill Earth! Take charge! Be responsible for fish in the sea and birds in the air, for every living thing that moves on the face of Earth.”
Take charge…reign… govern…rule. However you choose to say it, God gave us dominion over the earth and everything on it just like a King/Queen has dominion over his Kingdom.
That’s a huge responsibility and privilege. One that maybe you haven’t given a lot of thought to. Or maybe that’s just me. I’ve read it so many times, but I have never really dug into what that means for the way I live my life…until recently. If I’ve been given the position of king/queen, what kind of king/queen do I want to be? If YOU have been given the position of king/queen over the earth, what kind of king/queen do YOU want to be? What kind of life do you want for your future…your children’s future…your grand-children’s future…your great grandchildren’s future…and so on, you get the point. I want my tiny human’s futures to be better than mine. I want to be a good leader.
A good leader, a good king/queen, takes care of the people and land they rule over.
I want to take good care of what’s been entrusted to me. Even if I’ve never met you, I know you do too because I know you love someone, likely a whole bunch of someone’s, and you want a happy future for them. A future with clean drinking water, healthy food, and fresh air to breathe. A future with opportunity and possibility. We can’t move backward and change what has already been done, but we can start changing in small ways. Small changes often lead to huge impact. The founder of The Boy Scouts said it like this,” Try to leave this world better than you found it”. We can all try to do something to leave God’s creation better than we found it.
Jesus modeled for us the way a good King sacrifices for his people…becomes a servant even.
As a ruler over this earth, you could pick up trash when you’re hiking or taking a walk, recycle, compost, leave encouraging notes for people (oh yeah, we should leave people better than we found them too), help a stranger by opening a door, try meatless Mondays, reuse as much as possible, up cycle things, use reusable item’s like straws, plates, or bags. The list is endless.
I get asked on the regular about starting a pre-loved fashion boutique. This is one of the reasons I did it. This and I LOVE LOVE LOVE fashion. I want to honor my responsibilities well. Did you know that 80 pounds of textiles per PERSON per YEAR ends up in a landfill? And 95% of that could have been reused! Rescuing fashion from the landfills is one way that I can try to leave the world better than I found it. I want to take it even a step further this year.
If I’m asking people to buy pre-loved, and I am, I want to walk the walk as well, and I do, but for the next year I’m taking it to the extreme.
I have decided to ONLY buy used. If I need something, I’ll find it pre-owned. I want to see to what extent it is possible to avoid adding to our planets destruction. Now, I will exclude items that I feel unsafe to buy used like food, meds, and makeup. I’m sure a few other things will come up along the way. I think it’s going to be really hard, AND I know I can do hard things. I stated earlier that I wanted to invite you along. I’m not asking you to be extreme.
I’m inviting you to choose to do somethingto try to leave the world better than you found it. Not for me, not even for you, but because you were given the privilege to do so.
Can you imagine what the planet would look like if we all chose one small thing to contribute? Shoot, can you imagine what your neighborhood would look like or our schools or your own family? If giving up meat or picking up trash seems too difficult, I get that, start with something small. A good place to start could be just to follow my journey and see what happens to give you ideas or download the @poshmark app and see what amazing finds are available not only in my closet but in many many likeminded closets! Help to normalize pre-loved items as gifts. Commit to donating/buying preloved clothing. I’m sure you have even better ideas for this than I do. I’d love to hear about them! We can do this. We can be good “Kings”. It may look a bit different for each of us, but together we can make a difference in the lives of all of God’s creation.