Forgiveness Farming, Tim Keller, and Bill McKibben

Yesterday as I unloaded my Costco haul, I ironically listened to a sermon by Tim Keller (from Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York).  It is entitled “Can Faith Be Green?” and is available from Redeemer’s Sermon Store online:

Actually one could live as a hermit quite happily if the only source of input were these sermons.  I subscribe and hang on every word every week.  But I digress.

As I slogged through unpacking the chemical-laden foods in jumbo portions yesterday, wondering how many miles the products had been trucked in and at what cost to whom, I was chuckling over the irony of listening to Keller talk about how we actually treat animals and advocating that Christians consider “forgiveness farming, which benefits farmer, land and animals… not to mention consumers.  He mentioned a farmer, Joel Salatin, and I googled him and found this very thoughtful and thought-provoking article.  Here’s a link to the pdf:

Here’s a little teaser line: “How many industrial farmers look forward to taking their toddlers up to the confinement poultry house with them to check the 15,000 birds crammed beak-to-toe in a fecal pall?”

Frankly I’ve ignored, for a while, any book that made me question food sources or analyze too much about my eating habits. Why is that a no-conviction zone for me?  Laziness?  Something more?

I’m also reading Bill McKibben’s Deep Economy:The Wealth of Communities and the Durable Future and learning so much from that.  Honestly I don’t feel that I have enough familiarity with some of the background concepts to explain it intelligently, though my daughter would do a brilliant and thoughtful job, as she referred me to it in the first place.  But McKibben writes persuasively about communities’ producing and consuming more food locally — and the benefits, including a decrease in lonely hyper-individualism.

I’d love recommendations on other things to read.  Thoughts?


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