Spiritual Practice


Alex Konieczny & Hunter McWhorter

Before the homecoming dance, my date and I went out to dinner with eleven other couples. The people sitting at the next table picked up our check, which was roughly $350. Their unbelievable generosity left us dumbfounded. After the woman paid the bill, she left us with a challenge: “Just be sure to pay it forward.”

The righteous give and do not hold back.
Proverbs 21:26b (NRSV)

Receiving such a gift encouraged us to be generous. We could feel that God was watching over us, and we remembered that giving means more than receiving. The feeling of giving back is a better reward than any gift we could receive.

—Alex Konieczny, 18


FOLLOW JESUS’ EXAMPLE: Nails dug into his hands and feet. A crown of thorns was placed on his head. Jesus was the ultimate example of paying it forward. He died 2,000 years ago for you and me. He took the punishment that we deserve and said, “I’ve got this one and the next time you sin and the time after that.”

How can we pay it forward? Nothing puts me in a better mood than when someone pays for my food or coffee at a drive-through restaurant. As a result, I pay for the person behind me. Next thing you know, 80 people are paying it forward. What if you put sticky notes on all the lockers at school or left index cards on cars in a parking lot, offering encouragement? What’s stopping you from paying it forward?

—Hunter McWhorter, 20

—from devozine (March/April 2015). Copyright © 2015 by The Upper Room®. All rights reserved.

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