Sunday, May 9, 2010

Summer, New Beginnings, and Plants!

So summer has finally arrived... This last semester was brutal, but yet fun. 17.25 hours to be exact, and that is not counting the practicums, small groups, Asbury soccer practices, and soccer games that I coached. And just when you thought it was all over, I start a new beginning tomorrow. However, I am very excited to start this new beginning, which is my senior research project. This summer, I will be working at UK in the Department of Agriculture in something that is really interesting to me. Plants. Now, I am not going to bore you with the details, but my research will be dealing with the preservation and re-installation of native plant species in places that have been devoured by invasive species. If you were wondering, this research is important because native plants provide habitats for native animal species and populations. Therefore, if you change the plant environment, there are chances you are going to see a loss in animal populations. Also, my project will be comparing biomass, because the native grass (switchgrass) that I will be working with has alternate fuel potential. I think now, more than ever, I can appreciate the work I will be doing this summer with what is going on down in the Gulf.

As I prepare to begin tomorrow I cannot stop thinking about a message that a professor from UK gave at Asbury during a banquet a few months back. At first, most people in the crowd blew off his idea, but what he had to say seemed very relevant to me. He was speaking about conservation, and the roles that people that claim to be followers of Christ should maintain.. He sited the most famous verse in the Bible. John 3:16.

"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life."

He pointed out the first phrase in the verse, "For God so loved the world." He asked the crowd to reflect for a moment and then spoke about the word, "World." From here on I will attempt to paraphrase his ideas with mine. In Greek, the word used for world is κόσμος, which is pronounced kosmos, which is where we get our word cosmos in English. I would argue against some when I say that I truly believe that that is distinctly not just talking about humans. The verse does not say, "For God so loved humans..." but rather I think he is speaking of all of his creation. The cosmos, the world. Therefore, the speaker and I both agree that this verse alone shows God's love for everything in this world. In Genesis, God gave us dominion over this world, but not the right to abuse and exhaust it.

No, I am not a tree hugger. But I do believe that there are lots that we can do to help slow our destruction of the world. I think a lot of new technologies are moving us in the right directions to alleviate some of our major problems, but at the end of the day a lot of what is destroying our planet is unstoppable at the time. However, there are a lot of little things that we can do individually that can help.

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