I'm not a Bible-thumper. In other words, I don't memorize chapter and verse, and I don't claim to know what is best for other seekers, but I do find comfort in the words that I read there; and I get answers usually with one turn of the page.
The law of Tithing declares that a Tithe be given to that which feeds one's spirit. But I don't attend church in the traditional sense (haven't found too many institutions that feed my spirit), so sometimes I have to contemplate (with prayer) as to whom has fed my spirit, and thus where I should tithe. Today I thought of my brother. He use to feed my spirit, and still, almost two years since his passing, still does in a manner of speaking.
My home is full of trinkets he made for me, all of which reflected his spirit of love for his savior, Jesus Christ, in combination with his philosophy of honoring our gift, Mother Earth. I have much of his poetry in my possession: his main genre gives thanks to God. So I decided sometime ago to Tithe in his honor when the opportunity presented itself, because his memory continues to feed my spirit. But I wasn't sure. After all, is giving a donation to the Humane Society a place where my spirit is fed? Or is it just a donation? I prayed and decided that it was, but still, doubt swirled around me... until I journeyed to purchase dog and cat food to donate as a Tithe.
The first sign given me that I was headed in the right direction was simply a strong feeling of love. Simple. The next sign was when a man who crossed in front of me, and who resembled my brother, flashed a thank you smile, also similar to that of my brother's. Now you might say, oh well some people look alike, but my brother trimmed trees (many times in 100 degrees plus) for a living, and collected individuals ready to attend AA, and or NA, so he wasn't in the running for The Best Dressed and Just Showered award if you know what I mean... The next sign was yet another similar looking dude who needed to jaywalk in front of me. (Two tree-looking guys in a row...) The final straw was when a truck loaded to the gills with palm fronds pulled out in front of me. I knew then that God approved of my Tithe, but to further soothe my soul, He sent yet another truck of similar circumstance to slow my travels.
While rummaging through my side table drawer, one that I have neglected for years, I rediscovered a box full of magazine cutouts that I intended to paste on poster board someday. I got the idea from Mary Kay Ash, of Mary Kay Cosmetics and my parents. While Mary Kay Ash suggested that building a vision board, could help one focus on goals, my parents simply reminded me that when you believe, you will receive. Of course I thought they were talking about Santa Clause, but as I look around my home, I realize that I am living with whom I want, where I want (sort of...), and in the home I visualized many years ago (sort of again). As I emptied that long-lost box of dreams, I realized that I was holding pieces of my physical surroundings. Upon this revelation, I toured my home just to make sure.
The guest room is lovely with memorabilia that belong to all that visit there. I have my own private gym, tile flooring, a garden tub, desert floral gardens, and a pool that sports a weird waterfall and cabana. I live where I can swim during the long summer, and I enjoy dinning outside most of the year. My yard sometimes resembles a desert retreat with blooming succulents and tropical plants. Doves, hummingbirds, and butterflies flutter about.
Plant shelves inside my home hold treasures of family lore and unique art pieces. I've learned about stain glass design and a few creations hang in windows that bend light into color. Soon I will learn more about ceramics so that I can build a table I see in my mind.
I teach, so time off during summer (sort of), allows that I have some flexibility with my schedule. I am a writer, soon to be published. Wow!
As I compare ideas and dreams of many years ago that literally surround me, I can't help but think about my most recent dreams. They lay on the music stand of my dad's Baby Grand in the corner of my living room adjacent to my favorite reading chair. As I review my dreams yet to come true, I can't wait to gaze out upon the majesty of Sedona from my breakfast table.