Our world has an urgent rubbish problem, with mountains of plastic pollution dumped or burnt around the world. But Jesus tells us that even the smallest amount of faith can move mountains. So this week we’re praying with faith and joining millions of people who are taking part in Plastic Free July (plasticfreejuly.org) to bring an end to this rubbish problem and all the harm it is doing to our global neighbours.
Sunday 2 July
Plastic Free July is a global movement that sees millions of people reducing plastic pollution across the world each July. Give thanks today for every person who is taking part, and maybe consider joining in yourself!
Monday 3 July
Jesus said that the greatest commandments are to love God and love your neighbour (Matthew 22:37-40). Pray for the response from Coqueiral Baptist Church in northeast Brazil who are loving their neighbours affected by a lack of waste management. They are responding to flooding caused in part by plastic blocking the river by rescuing stranded people and supplying relief items such as food, clothing and shelter.
Tuesday 4 July
Gateway Church in Leeds is loving its global neighbours and God’s earth by reducing plastic use. The young people there have set up a refill store where the congregation can bring their own containers and buy products like pasta without the plastic packaging. One of the young people says, ‘It's quite inspirational really, we are helping the church do our bit.’ Pray for the young people leading us.
Wednesday 5 July
Dálethe Melissa is 20 years old and part of Coqueiral Baptist Church. They are celebrating Plastic Free July. She says, ‘We recognised that mission includes environmental issues years ago, but now want to take a new step, to eliminate disposable plastic items, understanding that they violate God's creation and that we can no longer be part of it.’ Please pray for them as they take this step.
Thursday 6 July
Nearly half of all plastic produced is only used once. Forgive us, Lord, for the way we have accepted this throw-away culture. Pray for all those who are working to challenge this and show that another way is possible.
Friday 7 July
As well as millions of individuals, we need governments and businesses to take action to tackle plastic pollution. The plastics treaty that is currently being negotiated could hold them to account. Pray that leaders and decision-makers will be influenced by a vast movement of Christians across the world calling for action on plastic for our global neighbours and for God’s creation. Visit tearfund.org/rubbish to sign the petition.
Saturday 8 July
Lord, break our hearts for what breaks yours. Two billion of our neighbours are living with the effects of poor waste management. We cry out with them and with creation to see your restoration and shalom. And we ask you to help us see where we need to be the answer to these prayers too. Amen.