“Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Corinthians 9:7).
I would not say that I am a “Christian.” (Although I was baptized and raised Catholic-ish.) And I do not believe that the any faith has the trademark on what is commonly called tithing. But it was not until I joined an inter-denominational church, [ http://www.bohdispiritualcenter.org ]that I really embraced tithing for myself. I willingly give 10% of my income to where I am spiritually fed. And I also willingly give my time and talents to those people, animals or causes that have a need where I can help.
Of course, I cannot always get to church to get “fed” and I cannot say yes to every cause or friend who needs my help. This is where the wisdom of age comes in.
This summer, I was inspired by so many people. They moved me by their spirit and heart on projects such as community gardens, books they wrote, people they’ve helped. Many times I just wrote out a full check for my 10%, or a portion of it, and divvied up the rest to other organizations that inspired me. I also put aside time to shine light on causes or organizations that may have needed some publicity. I always blog for green. And I’ll always donate my time and services to my personal friends’ endeavors.
Why am I telling you this when this article is about being green? Because that is your next step: Phase 4 out of 5 of being green. I’m asking you to give to what moves you. Maybe you don’t have to donate your money. Maybe you don’t actually have to plant a tree or clean a beach. Maybe you just have to take time to walk in a forest preserve or along a beach? I know that the time, or money, or attention that you put into your own personal green journey will make you happier and give you energy and pride and countless other gifts. I believe this because I feel blessed when I do these things. Your efforts, whether they be monetary or seemingly inconsequential, will make you a better person and that alone will open up your heart to knowing when and where what you should personally give to being green.
To existential for you?
Here is are some things that you could donate your time or talent or treasure to:
Go to the Lincoln Park or Brookfield Zoo. Think about what a wonderful planet we have and donate to a specific endangered animal species that you see and love and that needs your funding.
Or join the World Wildlife Federation. They send you a great magazine and have great Green Gifts for you to send that actually help endangered species.
Oceans Conservancy is a great organization to join too!
If you want to help monthly with beach clean-up in Montrose Harbor, email Leslie at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Outings, petitions, environmental laws being passed and more: Join the Sierra Club.
Write a blog or email about a cause that moved you to action.
Stuff envelopes for a green group or read an article in Mindful Metropolis and email the writer to tell him or her that you liked it. GREEN Groups and people need some lovin!
Here are the 5 Phases of Green for Beginners.
• Phase One: Let the Idea of being green blossom and get rid of the mind chatter of why you would or would not be green.
• Phase Two: Take Action in your own home and your work place.
• Phase Three: Learn what is interesting to you about being green.
• Phase Four: Join a website or cause that you are interested in and learn and contribute your time, talents or dollars.
• Phase Five: Become a Leader in your own household or workplace or neighborhood.