"Pay-it-forward" a Christmas Response
November 21, 2015
"Pay-it-forward" has become the name given to the response of a beneficiary of a kindness whose response benefits somebody other than the original benefactor. One might suppose that Christmas is a season of "paying-it-forward" as we give gifts at Christmas in response to God's ultimate gift of Jesus. So, at Christmas what might our Christian "pay-it-forward" look like in our community?
Well first, it looks like putting Christ back at the centre. It looks like being Christ's witnesses to all the World. It looks like going into the world to tell every tribe, tongue and nation about Him: all He said and all He did. Surrendered minds, humbled hearts, yearning spirits and acts in obedience to His command are what Christ asks of us. Let our response to Christ be to take seriously all He asked of us and to live this tangibly each and everyday in the places God has put us.
Secondly, it looks like kindness toward one another. It looks like us stepping into the gap and returning to God in worship and thanksgiving what He has blessed us with. This is the essence of our ACrossMission mandate - supporting from our abundant blessings Gospel ministries that struggle in poverty. The Disciple John asks very directly "How does God’s love abide in anyone who has the world’s goods and sees a brother in need and yet refuses help?" Christ asks us to respond to His gift of salvation by having His mindset and thus loving as He loved - Christ calls us to "pay-it-forward" with love - to respond to Him by blessing others.
A Christian "pay-it-forward" is to consistently and persistently do the greatest imaginable acts of kindness by sharing Christ's love, telling everyone about Jesus and by ensuring no brother or sister is suffering.
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In Canada "pay-it-forward" has quite literally become randomly paying the food bills of total strangers at coffee shops and restaurants - people often accomplish this anonymously by paying the bill for the car behind them in a drive-through. A congregation in Toronto added one small twist: they created postcards which they asked the drive-through attendant to deliver to the person whose bill had just been paid for.
This Christmas ACrossMission is asking you to pick up on this idea. Click on the image to the right, download the file, print some postcards and keep them handy. When you decide to "pay-it-forward" ask the waiter or drive-through attendant to deliver a postcard to the beneficiary with their paid bill. In this small gesture you are helping remind a busy world that Christ is the reason for Christmas ... we believe (in fact we "know" because it has already happened) that through these small actions God will open doors for you to speak about your Joy in the gift of Christ. Now THAT is a wonderful Christmas gift ... be blessed!