Pay It Forward Grace

Today while getting gas we met John as in Smith but Smith might not be his last night or it might be; we were never quite sure on that part. John was a jokester, laughing so hard that he doubled over at one point. What stood out about John possibly Smith but probably not was he’d paid cash for his gas and had over paid so he handed his nozzle to Dave and said use up the rest of what’s on the pump. This was when I came into the conversation seeing Dave holding two nozzles and a jolly John chattering away. I introduced myself and we got into a conversation about ‘paying it forward’. I told John one way I repay a ‘pay it forward’ is I pray for the one doing it. John then launched into a mini sermon of how when he had told his pastor that “all I can do I pray for someone’s need”, the pastor had scolded him. The pastor pointed out that praying was the most important thing you could possibly do for someone one. This sent John into another peal of laughter as he laughed at his own ignorance about the importance of prayer. We discussed a few more matters and then it was time to move away from the pumps so others could get their fill up as well and John called out, “enjoy God’s blessing”. I said we would and here came mini sermon number two; “Since I don’t have the authority bless someone that is up to God”, John said, “I just say enjoy God’s blessing”. I agreed and thanking him again reminded I was praying for him.

Small grace points come our way often and I do love it when the other person initiates the encounter. John was obviously a talker as well as a jokester but I could tell a man of compassion as well. He had mentioned he still had hope that there were good people out in the world, and I assured him we had met many such in the streets. You see, it is all about perspective; I found it amusing that John “Smith” left one guessing if Smith was his real name, that he had mentioned the need for anonymity in todays world but was so outgoing that he just couldn’t help himself. He talked to strangers, us for instance and I have a strong feeling John could talk to a tree if he had a mind to. No matter if he gave an alias last name or his real name John is being prayed for tonight and probably for quite a few nights to come.

I encourage you to see beyond someone’s jovial or sour attitude as the case may be and ‘see’ the real person, prayer is a privilege and a gift. Pray is a grace point and brings about grace points. Pray changes us and changes the world. So what are you waiting for? Pray, I do believe we are commanded to but more than that we are privileged to, invited to by the Creator of the Cosmos, the Savior of the world and equipped to do it well by the Spirit.

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