When I was a kid, I used to browse through my dad's copy of Carla Emery's Old Fashioned Recipe Book, leafing through the pages of how to dry greens, wash clothes by hand, raise milk cows, and keep warm in the winter with just a wood stove. (Although we didn't do all of those things when I was a kid, and I may never, I guess it doesn't hurt to be prepared.)
As I was reading through the book today, I came across a passage that really struck me. Carla Emery first published her book in 1971. She's about the most down-to-earth person possible: rural, self-sufficient, confident. Salt-of-the-earth. I respect a lot of what she says, and I'd like to follow in her footsteps and live off the land some day. I love what she says about the world we live in (italics hers, bold mine) and pray that everyone who is lucky enough to have a tiny of slice of nature hold the same conviction:
"YOUR LAND IS A SPIRITUAL RESPONSIBILITY
"I believe we should live morally and spiritually as if Jesus were coming in the next five minutes, but economically and ecologically we should live as if He won't be here for 5,000 years more. I think it's a crime against that precious heritage God promised Abraham and the rest not to cherish and try to preserve this earth -- His splendid creation. If it is going to come into destruction this should be no doing of any Christian hands. So please brothers and sisters let us struggle to preserve in health, beauty and usefulness this planet that God has given us and our descendants to be our home until that last day when we shall indeed be raised to be with Him. Let us be able to report our stewardship proudly" (1977 ed., p. 34).
Amen, sister. Amen.