I am closest to God when I am in nature. That is where I get my spiritual food.
There was a time when I attended church on a regular basis. I loved my church. Every sermon, and many of the people who attended, all helped to inspire me, feed my spirit and brought me closer to God. And so I gladly added to the collection plate every Sunday. It was there that I first heard the expression “tithe where you get your spiritual food.”
I won’t go into the history of tithing or get into deep religious meaning here, but a “tithe” is commonly defined as “the first tenth of a wage earners income. It’s giving back to God something He gave in the first place. Tithing is not any tenth; it’s the first tenth of one’s income— salary, dividends, interest—income from any source.”
Those who attend church usually tithe to their church. For those who don’t attend church, I think it’s a great idea to tithe to the things that DO feed your spirit as well as to the organizations that help to protect whatever provides your spiritual food.
Since nature is the main thing that feeds my spirit, I tithe to many organizations that help protect land, wildlife and the environment. On a smaller scale, I invest in an eco-friendly landscape that helps to bring nature and wildlife right into my own property, where I can get an up close and personal view of the miracles of this planet.
The way I see it, these tithes are a necessity and I gladly budget for them. And of course, I often go way over my budget. But my own gardens and the many beautiful public lands of the world help to keep my spirit fed. Any place in nature brings me closer to God and so I do what I can to bring nature right to my door. Nature is where I get my spiritual food.
Many people don’t go to church but still participate in activities that help to feed their spirit. Whether it is a sport, such as fishing or surfing; a pastime such as reading or listening to good music; or activities which get you close to nature, such as hiking or gardening. Anything that touches you deep inside and helps raise your level of awareness is probably feeding your spirit.
Helping to support and protect those activities is how I tithe. It’s my way of “giving back to God something He gave in the first place.”