OPENING PRAYER & THE LORD’S PRAYER
Prayers of Adoration and Confession
Giving, forgiving, and healing God,
We gather in your light and beauty
to worship and adore you.
You are our strength, when we cry out in weakness.
You show us grace in solidarity with the sinner.
You guide our paths, when we lose sight of your purpose.
Your love is powerful and holds us close even when we feel or run far from you.
Before you, nothing is hidden.
You know us and our shortcomings,
and so we come before you and confess:
Generous and loving God,
we confess that
in a world where many do not have enough,
we have taken more than we need.
In a world where many live in fear,
we take peace for granted.
In a world where many have lost hope,
we are too often indifferent to despair.
Forgive us, merciful God,
and transform our lives.
Shall We now Pray the Pray Jesus taught his disciples to pray:
Our Father Who Art in Heaven…Hallowed be thy name. Thy Kingdom come Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation but deliver is from evil…for Thine is the Kingdom the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen.
We Listen to God’s Word
Prayer for Understanding
As we read & listen to your Word let us hear your voice, and in hearing, let our lives be changed and your world transformed.
Ephesians 2:4-10 New International Version But because of his great love for us, God who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
Colossians 3:12-17 New International Version 12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. 16 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. 17 And whatever you do,whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
MESSAGE: Paying Forward- Acts of Kindness
My message today is Paying Forward-Acts of Kindness. Like the first line reads of the hymn we just sang….Jesus’ hands were kind hands, doing good to all, and it goes on to say… Take my hands Lord Jesus, let them work for you; make them strong and gentle, kind in all I do.
In reading stories about Jesus in our Bibles we can visualize Jesus and his disciples travelling the countryside…caring, helping, healing people…without judgement. Only with pure LOVE!
This is what is asked of us in our earthly life… To show each other and strangers unconditional Acts of Love and Kindness…
“We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.”
Winston S. Churchill
The thrill of paying it forward is that you do something really good for someone who would not at all expect this kind act. You don’t necessarily have to pay it forward only to people you know. Quite the contrary, you can pay it forward to basically every individual that you can somehow get in touch with.
By paying it forward, you can make quite an important difference in this world. Not only will you brighten another person’s mood, but you will also set a chain reaction in motion. If you pay it forward to three people, who again pay it forward to three others themselves, the entire planet could be transformed. Affecting change doesn’t take much. You don’t have to be rich, powerful or influential. Every ordinary person can help to make this world a better place, by paying it forward.
Doing a good deed to an unsuspecting stranger is a beautifully selfless act. Not only will it remind them that this world is full of selflessness, generosity, and kindness. It will also encourage the benefactor to be kinder and more compassionate to others.
How to Pay It Forward?§ Look out for the opportunities. Life will provide you with numerous opportunities to pay it forward. You only have to be attentive.
§ Be willing to help complete strangers. There may not always be an opportunity to do your family or friends a good deed. But you can always help those who are in need, even if they are complete strangers.
§ Give freely without expecting anything in return. Many people will ask you how they can reimburse you for your kindness. You can introduce these people to the idea of paying it forward. Tell them that you don’t expect anything in return, but that you would greatly appreciate it if they could pay the good deed forward.
§ Even small acts count. It doesn’t matter so much how much you give. All that matters is that you are willing to give and to spread the word.
Enjoy the following pay it forward ideas!
1. Do a good deed to a homeless person. There are so many things you can do for a homeless person. Ask them if they want a coffee or a pizza slice of the restaurant they sit next to. Drop them something to eat you’ve bought in the supermarket. The opportunities are endless.
2. Pay for someone’s coffee. When buying a coffee, you can casually pay the coffee or tea of the person behind you. It’s a fantastic way to brighten their mood. The idea of paying a coffee forward worked so incredibly well in Canada that more than 200 consecutive orders were paid forward. That is until someone who was paid four coffees was not willing to pay the three coffees of the person behind them.
3. Participate in a cleanup day. Cleanup days are a fantastic way to contribute your part in helping to preserve mother nature.
4. Donate some of your clothes. Have a look in your closet. If there are many items you haven’t worn for years, consider donating some of them.
5. Run for a good cause. Numerous charity runs (or walks and bicycle rides) are held each year. Sign-up for the next one and participate in raising funds for a good cause.
6. Ask for donations instead of gifts. Many people wonder how they can do something good without having to spend money. Well, by asking people to donate for a good cause instead of buying you a birthday/Christmas/wedding gift, you can do a good deed without having to spend anything.
7. Free up spare change. As the days pass by, you’ll notice that the spare change in your purse grows bigger and bigger. The next time you come across a payment machine, be sure to throw a couple of quarters in it for the next person. You can do this with basically any payment machine, for example, parking ticket terminals, parking meters but also paying for the next person’s vehicle fee at a toll booth.
8. Donate your books. There are two types of books. The first type consists of really good books that you pick up again and again. The second type consists of books that were – more or less – interesting to read but no longer serve a purpose. You could donate all the books you no longer need, for instance to your local library.
9. Leave a good book behind. Once you’ve finished reading an excellent book, consider leaving it for someone else to read. No matter if you’re in a cafe, train, bus or airplane, leaving a copy of a book behind is a nice way to lighten someone’s mood.
10. Smile at someone. Give someone a smile. You’ll see that many people will quickly loosen up and return the smile.
11. Become someone’s mentor. You can always mentor someone. It’s free and there will be always people younger and less experienced than you who could greatly benefit from your knowledge.
12. Donate blood. By donating your blood, you can potentially help another person to live. What could be more beautiful than doing something that helps someone else to stay alive?
13. Buy something from a kid’s lemonade stand. Many kids sell lemonade or old toys. Be sure to buy something from them, it will make them incredibly happy and gives them a sense of accomplishment.
14. Donate 5-10% of your income. By cutting your expenses for things you don’t really need, you’ll have quite a lot of money left over that you can donate to a good cause.
15. Offer your services for free. There are many lawyers and psychologists who offer their services entirely for free for those who are in need. You could do the same by sharing your service for free. It certainly won’t hurt your business and if you’re a service provider, it only costs you some of your time.
16. Listen to someone’s story. Many people don’t have someone who listens to them, someone who cares about them. You could be that someone. You don’t even have to find a solution to all their problems, sometimes it simply takes someone who is willing to listen.
17. Give some words of encouragement. There are many situations in life where we see the most ludicrous things happen to strangers. Don’t be the one who just stops to stare, be the one who helps them to get back up.
18. Help someone improve their life. Making beneficial changes in your life is all about knowledge. If you’ve gone through a tough time and if you’ve found crafty hacks that helped you to overcome the difficulties, consider sharing them with other people. Your advice may greatly help them to overcome the difficulties as well.
19. Be forgiving. Life will confront you with numerous opportunities to lose your patience. Perhaps someone is “stealing” your parking spot. Or the intern made another terrible mistake. Whatever it is, be willing to forgive others immediately. Be kind about their weaknesses and try to see yourself in them.
20. Encourage others with Post-it notes. There are many places where people could greatly use some encouragement. If you have the time, consider posting some motivating or encouraging notes in these places.
21. Spend some time with the elderly. There are many people in retirement homes that have no one who comes visiting. You could drop by your local old-age home and ask if there’s someone whose day you could brighten.
22. Pay the animal shelter a visit. Your closest animal sanctuary will most likely be glad if you’re willing to spend some time with their dogs or cats. In many cases, it’s possible to take a walk with a dog.
23. Pray for someone in need. Many people consider praying as something that is incredibly powerful. If there is someone you know who is in need, you cannot lose much by including them in your prayers. Sent them some love and wish them the necessary strength it takes to see things through.
24. Share your umbrella. When it’s raining, let someone stand with you under your umbrella.
25. Pay someone an honest compliment. If you see someone doing something really great, don’t shy away from giving them a competent. You can give out compliments for basically everything, you only need to seize the opportunity.
26. Put coupons on community boards. Whenever you have a coupon that you don’t need, be sure to put it on a notice-board or post the coupon code online. There will always be someone who can make use of it.
27. Offer to take a photo. If you see someone taking pictures of their family, offer to take the picture so that this person can be alongside their family on the photo.
28. Leave your change where kids will easily find it. Remember that awesome day when you found some money when you were a little child? Well, now it’s your turn to pay this wonderful feeling forward to another child. Leave some of your change somewhere you know that kids will instantly spot it.
29. Mow the lawn for an elderly person. There are many people who can no longer take care of their gardens themselves. Taking care of their garden is a fantastic way to pay it forward.
30. Be nice to customer service personal. Treat service personal kindly and be sure to tell them how much you appreciate their service. It can greatly brighten their mood, especially when they are confronted with ungrateful, harsh and impolite customers all the time.
31. Pick up garbage. Many people are so careless about nature that they simply throw things away right where they are. By picking up some garbage, you can relieve the burden these ignorant people place on nature.
32. Carry someone’s bags. If you see an someone struggling with all their bags from the grocery store, offer your help.
33. Loan something without expecting it to be returned. There are people who simply won’t accept a gift from you. But if you tell them that you’re just loaning whatever you have to give, they will gladly accept the help. You don’t necessarily have to tell them that you don’t intend on calling it in again.
34. Give up your seat. Offer your seat to an elderly person. They will greatly appreciate your good deed.
35. Do pro bono work. You wouldn’t believe how many skills you have that could be greatly used in charitable or non-profit projects. If you have some time to spend, doing pro bono work is a fantastic way of paying it forward.
36. Let others in the line go in front of you. If you’re standing in the line at the supermarket and you see that the person behind you is buying only a couple of things, let them go in front of you.
37. Help someone pursue their dream. What better way to pay something forward than helping someone accomplish their dream? If you find yourself in a position that allows you to help someone realize one of their dreams, offer your help.
38. Say “yes” when someone asks for help. If someone asks you for help, see if you can help in any way shape or form. You may not always be able to solve the problem, but you can at least help to alleviate its effects.
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