My wife Beth is a green thumb. She talks to and encourages plants to flourish. She pampers them with water regularly. She is very diligent in tending our backyard garden. These red ripe and luscious-looking tomatoes are the harvest of her loving kindness to our garden of vegetables.
No life can exist in a vacuum. A plant needs nourishment from the earth. It needs water, sunshine and air to grow and develop. A baby needs to be connected to the mother to grow in the womb. Animals need food and water in their living environment to thrive. People need a good physical and spiritual environment to thrive.
At Creation, God prepared a perfect cradle and environment for life on Planet Earth:
“And God said, Let there be a firmament in the middle of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. And God made the firmament and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven. . . . And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together to one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so. And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called the Seas: and God saw that it was good.” Genesis 1:6-10, American King James Version.
The above narrative of what happened on the second and third days of Creation Week identifies elements that, together with sunlight, are critical to life – air, water and land. All three components are vital both as locus of and support to life. These are what make life abundant and flourishing on Earth.