His Eye is on the Sparrow: Animal Welfare and Christian Responsibility

I am a born again believer and my relationship with Jesus Christ remains the most important aspect of my life. And though every day I fall so very short of what I can and should be as a child of God and a representative of Christ on Earth, my faith informs every aspect of my life.So much of my walk of faith has been shaped from my earliest memories by those closest to me, dear ones who share my faith and my struggles, the challenges of living a Christ-like life in an un-Christ-like world.
My faith has carried over in important ways to my relationship with animals. I have held precious animals as they took their last breath. I have fed abandoned kittens and cradled them all night long when they were too tiny to sustain their own body heat.
As a Christian, I love all living things, including animals. In fact, for me, the love of animals is profoundly and inextricably bound up with my faith in Christ. Unfortunately, this fierce and enduring connection between faith and animal fellowship is not something many of my fellow Christians share. 


I have known many deeply faithful Christians who refused to pray for a sick, injured, or lost animal because they believed that animals were not possessed of souls. For them, to pray for a soulless creature would be a form of disrespect—if not sacrilege.And that is the challenge that so many Christians face. It is the dichotomy between compassion and apathy which, as a Christian and an animal rescuer, activist, and advocate, chills me to the bone.
The soul is composed of 3 elements: a Mind to think, a Heart to feel emotions, and a Will to decide. Animals, just as humans, possess these characteristics.Animals can become sad, and depressed, if mistreated.Likewise, animals are happy and content when we respect them as creatures of God's divine handiwork and omnipotence.
Many Christians base their relationship with animals on Genesis 1: 26: “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth” (KJV).
It is this idea of “dominion” which so often drives Christian attitudes toward animal, all too often leading to negligence in the best cases and to brutality in the worst. The 2017 online edition of the Merriam-Webster dictionary defines “dominion”, alternatively, as “supreme authority” and “absolute ownership.”
Far too often, though, Christians distort and abuse this idea of “absolute ownership” for their own selfish gains, for reasons that have nothing to do with adherence to God’s commandments. In the name of “dominion,” they may discard or kill an animal whose care has become too costly, asserting that this is the God-given right of the proprietor to dispose of his “belongings” as he sees fit. They may “punish” or “break” an animal who does not submit to human will—an animal who does not easily take to the yoke or the bridle, who does not perform adequately at aquatic parks or in circuses, an animal that dares to exhibit aggression against a human, no matter how grossly it has been treated. In the name of human “dominion”, animals are relegated to the backyards of our homes, spending their entire lives crushed and torn by the weights of heavy chains, left alone to languish in the heat of summer and to tremble in the agonies of winter, subsisting on dirty water and insect infested food as the sounds of the family’s laughter and the scent of bounteous food wafts from the kitchen window. 
In the name of “dominion”—and commerce—animals spend their lives in cramped cages, bearing litter after litter to of “high-end” purebreds and coveted “designer” mixes, even as their bones deform to the shape of their wire prisons, their skin crawls with vermin and flames with bites, their sight clouds from lifetimes spent in darkness, and their spirit erodes from a life that has never known kindness, never felt the touch of a gentle hand, never heard the soft voice of Christ-like compassion.
Around the world, every day, animals are either skinned alive, or boiled alive so that their fur can be harvested in the service of human vanity. They are cut, poisoned, tortured, and brutalized before their lives are finally taken to support so-called “research” that too often provides no tangible benefit to humanity whatsoever. 
To meet humans’ insatiable gluttony, sows are confined for their entire lives in nursing pens with no room even to lie down or turn around; chickens are stuffed into cramped cages with thousands of other birds, suffering broken bones and suffocation in the crushing throng; cattle are stunned with electric prods and their throats slit before being hung from by their hind legs to bleed slowly to death. And these are horrors that are repeated countless times each day on a global scale.
In my life, I have seen terrible things: animals starved and beaten: Cats so traumatized by abuse they were scheduled for euthanasia because their fear of humans made them “unadoptable”; dogs burned, shot, beaten, and stabbed.America is a purportedly Christian nation where humanity is said to prevail…
In the name of some supposed God-given hierarchy, the welfare of non-human animals is deemed secondary, non-essential, an afterthought, or even a luxury that only the wealthy, the indulgently softhearted, or the foolish can afford. And this is all not only rationalized but presented as a divine right and duty, a commandment from God.
But I know another Jesus. The Jesus I know is the Jesus of love. Of mercy. Of tenderness and of loving kindness. My Jesus is the Jesus whose eye is on the sparrow, the One who witnesses each sparrow’s fall. Note Luke 12: 6, “Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God?” (KJV) and Psalm 50: 10-11: “For every beast of the forest is mine, and the cattle upon a thousand hills. / I know all the fowls of the mountains: and the wild beasts of the field are mine” (KJV italics original).
We, as Christians, do not own these animals. WE do not hold supreme authority over them. They belong, always, and forever, to God, their Creator, and it is in Him that supreme authority rests. We are stewards. We are not proprietors. We are caretakers, not creators. So, when His eye is on the sparrow, know that it is also on the keeper of the sparrow. When He claims His cattle, His fowl, His beasts of the field, be certain that the stewards charged with their care will be called to account.
If we are to be Christians, the we must be Christ-like—and at the heart of this is love; it is compassion; it is wonder in and reverence for the works of divine creation, particularly those imbued with the sacred breath of life. Only when we learn to do this, to exercise the tender-loving care for all creatures that God has so abundantly and undeservedly heaped upon us that we will truly understand what it means to worship.Only then we will truly have the capacity to see and to reverence His works as we should. Only then will we truly be the representatives of Christ that we are called to be. Because the Bible says that the animals have much to teach us: “But ask now the beasts, and they shall teach thee; and the fowls of the air, and they shall tell thee: / Or speak to the earth, and it shall teach thee: and the fishes of the sea shall declare unto thee. / Who knoweth not in all these that the hand of the Lord hath wrought this? / In whose hand is the soul of every living thing, and the breath of all mankind” (Job 12: 7-10, KJV). How many more precious innocents must suffer and die before we finally learn?

Motivational Bible Quotes that gives us strength and resilience in Christ.
Philippians 4:13 – I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

Psalm 119:28 My soul melteth for heaviness: Strengthen thou me according unto thy word.

1 Corinthians 10:13 – There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God [is] faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear [it].

Isaiah 12:2 Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: For the LORD JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; He also is become my salvation.

Psalm 118:14 The LORD is my strength and song, And is become my salvation.

Psalm 28:7-8 The LORD is my strength and my shield; My heart trusted in him, and I am helped: Therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; And with my song will I praise him. The LORD is their strength, And he is the saving strength of his anointed.

Psalm 22:19 But be not thou far from me, O LORD: O my strength, haste thee to help me.

Psalm 46:1 God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble.

Psalm 31:24 – Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the LORD.

Mark 12:30 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.

Isaiah 41:10 – Fear thou not; for I [am] with thee: be not dismayed; for I [am] thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.

Psalm 18:32 It is God that girdeth me with strength, And maketh my way perfect.

Mark 11:24 - Therefore I say unto you, what things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive [them], and ye shall have [them]

2 Corinthians 12:9-10 – And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.

Isaiah 40:31 – But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew [their] strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; [and] they shall walk, and not faint.

1 Chronicles 16:11 Seek the LORD and his strength, Seek his face continually.

Deuteronomy 31:6 – Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he [it is] that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.

Deuteronomy 20:4 – For the LORD your God [is] he that goeth with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.

Habakkuk 3:19 The LORD God is my strength, And he will make my feet like hinds’ feet, And he will make me to walk upon mine high places. To the chief singer on my stringed instruments.

Ephesians 6:10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.

Final Thoughts
Our strength and utmost motivation comes from the Lord, and that is the resounding pattern in the Bible. He holds us up and gives rest and joy, when we trust Him throughout fear and weakness.References – KJB
Friends: Sometimes, life can be a little unfair while wriggling through the ups and downs. In our pursuit to make life worthy enough to be loved and cherish, we may hit the unnoticed life stump which leads to a horrific memory that in most cases leaves a deep psychological scar. Going down the memory lane and reflecting on those hard times sometimes may not be enough to compensate what these memories have caused already.

Everyone experiences a varying degree of stress, what distinguishes stress reactions from trauma is the degree of threat and the degree of helplessness inclusively.
Naturally, stress drives us to the edge of our enduring capability, but we're still able to reflect and function to some heights. With trauma, we are paralyzed, unable to reply, unable to devise strategies of security or action. However, the world has presented us with a situation that we cannot understand, master, or respond to, but even in the midst of the dark clouds, there's sure to be a promising light end.
Very frightening or distressing events may result in a psychological wound or injury. This trauma can result in difficulty in coping or functioning normally. Everyone's reaction to potentially traumatic experiences is different. Most people recover well with the help of family and friends and do not experience long-term problems. Some people experience problems directly after the traumatic event or much later.
If you've experienced a stressful or disturbing scenario that's left you feeling down and emotionally out of control, you may have been traumatized. Psychological trauma may leave you struggling with upsetting notions, reminiscences, and anxiety that won't fade off that easily. It can also leave you feeling disconnected and unable to trust certain people. Each time awkward things surfaces, it may take a while to get over the pain and become safe again. Nonetheless, whether the trauma happened in a couple of years ago or yesterday, you can always make solution changes and move on with your life, it's precious.
It is quite understandable how gross our past ordeals can negatively influence the beauty of our dream life, and I'm pretty sure no one would want for his or her life to become uninviting and gloomy. We hold the rein of our lives and dream not just to make it jaw dropping but worth showing off to the world.
Isolating and beating one's self in the head is not a point here as it will one make matters worse. Relating to others face to face will significantly suffice, so make sure to keep a quality relationship and avoid wasting away.
Ultimately, it brings me great sorrow when I see people give in to life circumstances, have you forgotten that your reactions to others and what comes your way take a greater contribution in the definition of life itself? In that stead, I urge everyone, sitting idly and drenched in depression to stand up to the call of your true self. "How we treat life's statue is exactly how we'll define it, and its impact on us."
Our Declaration of Independence begins thusly: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” From the very get-go, this world-renowned document establishes that we are all equal and have basic rights bestowed on us by God. True, this document is from the United States, but scholars around the world have studied it, and it has gone on to influence the creation of many such texts and documents world-wide. Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Sounds good, doesn’t it?
Although our founding fathers were careful to use the word ‘Creator’ and certainly intended for the United States to be all-inclusive in terms of the religious and spiritual creeds of its citizens, by and large, we know that they were followers of Christ. Therefore, through a simple exercise of deductive reasoning, we understand that the founding fathers intended for their brothers and sisters in Christ to make the land a peaceful, amicable place to live for all. Unfortunately, America’s citizens have by and large failed to meet that mark, both by the standards of our foundational documents and God himself.
How have we done this? How have we made this critical and fundamental errors when we are guaranteed these ‘inalienable’ rights—and why have we not spread these rights on to the rest of God’s creatures? All of these questions may be too large for this blog post to tackle head on, but my personal opinion comes from many different basses.
For one, Christianity may be the most practiced religion in the United States, and it’s true that everyone is free to be what they are, be it Christian, Muslim, Jewish, etc., but there has been a disheartening general trend, increasing over the past few decades. This trend is towards Christian persecution, with an array of anti-Christian rhetoric and a tendency to blame all of the ills and evils of our society on Christian sources. While it is true that our faith and leadership need constant attention and cultivation, it is hardly fair or correct to blame an entire religious body for all of America’s problems.

The rights of our fellow man are often undercut and undermined by those in positions of power. Disgracefully, we have seen even trusted political leaders and other figures of power and authority fall under scandal with relation to the exploitation of young men and women, often tied to human trafficking for the sex trade. These truly heinous crimes are not just sins in the eyes of man, but in the eyes of God, as well.
Poverty, too, and class warfare, as well as prejudices, racism, and other social issues, are to blame for the wide chasm where human rights should snugly fit into place. Why, there is currently a man running for the governorship of the state of Oklahoma who actively advocates for the euthanization of disabled people.
I’ll give you a moment to both process those words and to give it a quick Google to confirm this disgusting fact. It is, indeed, true, and treads upon the already downtrodden.And what of our animal friends? There are numerous organizations in North America and, indeed, the world over, all dedicated to the rights of animals. 
In relation to the Declaration of Human Rights, each and every human and even non-human including animals has the right to liberty, life, and safety.
In addition, as said by the Global Covenant on Political and Civil Rights "Every human being has the characteristic and inherent right to life. This right is going to be secure by regulation. No one will be randomly dispossessed and deprived of his or her life."Animal Rights And The Importance Of All Life.
I look on America today and I ask, what about their right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness? For the most part, for the overwhelming majority, all of this simply means being left alone by humankind and simply allowing our fellow beings to exist.
A cow does not pursue happiness by stockpiling weapons and forming a guerrilla warfare militia, that would be man.A dog pursues happiness just in being by man’s side, and by chasing their tails, swimming,exploring a hiking trail with their human companions, etc.
We human beings are a part of this great web of all creation, existing among the biggest and smallest of God’s creatures. Each and every creature plays its own part, creating symbiosis, the circle and cycle of life. The other creatures do not try to manipulate the web, that role falls solely onto humankind. That is our sin. What is theirs?
The answer is that they do not sin. Man is the only creature capable of sin, and therefore of redemption through the love of Christ and God’s grace. The animals are universally loved by God, with no holy laws to abide. Why is this so? Because God has made humankind the stewards of the animals, custodians of their lives. What have we done to show our Heavenly Father that we can act in that capacity? Horrors. Only horrors.
Factory farms. Hunting for game or sport. Torturing animals. Breeding them with such specific traits that they cannot even reproduce by natural means. Slaughtering them en masse, taking their flesh in our teeth, tasting their fears with our tongues, and delighting in that flavor. 
This was not a part of God’s plan. This is not God’s grand design. This is hubris. This is folly. This is unjust. This is cruelty. If you feel angry, then good. You should. If you feel upset, then good. You should. If you feel deep down in your bones that you are ready to stand, brothers and sisters, I invite you to straighten your spine with tungsten and steel and stand tall beside me.

Be Kind and Cruelty-Free

When it comes to life, pain is somewhat inevitable. We can try to escape it all we want, but we will always encounter it when we least expect it. Whether it’s the passing of a loved one, the end of a relationship, or stubbing your toe on a wall – pain is something which touches all of our lives. Although we cannot eliminate pain altogether, we can certainly take steps to reduce it in ourselves and our fellow humans. Although some negative things which happen in our lives are inevitably due to “acts of God” and freak accidents, many are put in place by people with poor morals and motivations.
                       
Sometimes we may find that we are hurting our loved ones, whether obviously or in more subtle ways. If you have a light-hearted relationship with someone, it can be easy to “tease” them and “insult” them without thinking too much of it, prodding them constantly with microaggressions and insecurities. People who wear their heart on their sleeve are likely to inform you if you’re bothering them excessively. People who hide their emotions, however, are more likely to bottle their pain up inside until it reaches a critical mass. The latter type of person is plentiful, and you may not realize it until it’s too late.

Whether you’re a Christian or not, the old saying “treat your neighbor as you would like to be treated” is one of the cornerstones of human civilization which epitomizes how we have become so advanced as a species on the planet. Human beings are social animals who need to interact with one another and help one another in order to survive and thrive in the long-term. Though there are inevitably problems and exceptions, being considerate of our fellow humans has allowed us to get to where we are today.


Be cruelty-free to animals too!



Although we have generally learned that treating other humans with contempt is wrong, especially if unjustified, many of us still abuse and show hatred to animals nonetheless. Although growing trends of veganism, vegetarianism, and cruelty-free products are emerging in recent years, more has to be done in order to protect the well-being of animals. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a meat-eater, a vegan, or anything in between, we can all still get behind the humane and compassionate treatment of animals.

It’s easy to jump to meat-eating when it comes to animal rights, although there are many other things to consider too. For example, some people are abusive and mean to their pets, striking them and causing them severe distress. We should always remember that the animals we share this planet with have just as much right to be here as we do, even if we can be deemed the “smarter” species of the two. Being smart and/or superior to other animals does not give us the right to be mean or abusive to them! If someone said this about powerful humans and weaker humans, they would be immediately chastised for it.

The sad thing about animal cruelty is that animals are 100% innocent and don't deserve to suffer. Animals can only try to act out physically, something which often sees them being retaliated against. Even though animals fight naturally in the wild, this is simply part of the food chain process; they do not fight one another in the name of a sick kind of pleasure. As a result, humans should do the same, treating them with respect and avoiding confrontations with them at all times.