All the animals in the forest are Mine and the cattle on thousands of hills.
All the wild birds are Mine and all living things in the fields. ~ Psalm 50:10, 11
I have a CAS card for this week's Our Daily Bread Designs Forum Bible Verse Thursday Challenge. I just love this St Francis stamp from Our Daily Bread Designs and it is perfect for today's lesson.
Many of us feel a little silly if we react strongly to the death of a pet or the plight of an animal. "Well, it was just a cat," we say, embarrassed by our grief. Where does this attitude come from? It’s certainly not biblical. Our modern view of animals can be traced primarily to such Enlightenment philosophers as René Descartes, who argued that animals are biological machines unable to feel pain or experience emotion and unimportant except as they affect the lives of human beings. In the Bible, by contrast, value and redemption extend not only to humans but to all animals.
We are tempted to turn the unmerited gift of our creation in the image of God into a claim of greatness, into a reason not to love those who are not our equals. We often resemble the man in the parable of the unmerciful servant, who owed a king a great debt, was forgiven it, and then did not extend the same grace to those beneath him.
That we pervert the image of God in ourselves when we do not love that which is beneath us is the critical spiritual insight of St. Francis of Assisi and of Albert Schweitzer.
Schweitzer argues that one is holy only if one assists all life as one is able, and if one refrains from afflicting injury upon anything that lives. One does not ask in what way this or that form of life merits or does not merit sympathy as something valuable. . . Life as such is holy. . . .
St Francis wasn't a mere sentimentalist about bunnies and birds and pets-he simply lived from his heart the respect for all creatures-animal and human-that Christ's Incarnation brought into the world. Through humble divine love, Francis discovered the same compassion that human laws, centuries in the future, would require of us all. And so Francis was an example, in a reverse sort of way, of the fact that "love is the fulfillment of the law."
This passage from Psalms clearly shows us that God considers animals to belong to him. Therefore, if God exercises dominion over creation through love, we should reflect God’s image in our dealings with His creation – including animals.
Your challenge this week is to create a project using this scripture or another verse that describes God's relationship with the creatures of creation. When uploading your project, please use keyword ODBDBVT31 and then hop over to Our Daily Bread Designs Forum and share your work with us!
Cardstock: Bazzill – Coconut Swirl, Cocoa
Designer Paper: My Mind’s Eye – Indie Chic “Nutmeg”
Stamps: Our Daily Bread Designs – Francis of Assisi
Inks, Stains and Paints: Versafine –Onyx Black; Ranger Distress Ink – Tumbled Glass, Broken China, Peeled Paint
Prismacolor Pencils: Peach, Goldenrod, Lime Peel, Olive Green, Cloud Blue, True Blue, Beige, Beige Peach, Terra Cotta, Sienna Brown, Light Brown, Espresso, Warm Grey 30%, French Grey 20%, French Grey 50%
Accessories & Other Stuff: Tim Holtz Idea-Ology - Fasteners