Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Pay It Forward

My family and I received an unexpected blessing yesterday from a friend when my wife called about our utility bills from Washington.  We were staying at a friends home while they were spending the Winter in Arizona.  Their only request was that we cover the water and electric bills while staying in their Iowa home.

"Pay it forward," our host said.  "When you are back on your feet again, I want you to return the favor to someone else."

"We budgeted for this expense and we have the money to cover these expenses," my wife insisted.

Janet was persistent.  "We are happy you are getting settled.  I prefer you pay it forward then repay us for these expenses."

This experience in Iowa is part of something much bigger I'm witnessing about my new neighbors.  It has to do with treating others the way you want to be treated.  There is something about small towns that brings people closer together.  I also experienced this in the community of Ramona, a small town outside of San Diego.

Imagine what the world would look like if every good deed was repaid forward to a stranger or someone with no ability to repay the kindness of others in his or her present circumstances.  Kindness is contagious.  Paying it forward can happen in entire neighborhoods or towns.  It can spread to big cities.  It starts with a generous spirit.

Yes, my family will pay it forward.  How about you?  Have you ever been asked to pay it forward?  Please share what happened.

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