You’ve heard the term, “pay it forward,” right? It’s a pretty cool concept. When someone does something kind and unexpected you show your appreciation for that gracious act by doing the same (or something similar in heart) to someone else.

6 Fun Ways to Pay It Forward @mrslotanner

Why Pay It Forward?

I consider almost any opportunity to serve an opportunity to pay it forward. That’s a bit abnormal to most people but trust me, I have a good reason.

My reason to be kind, without expectation or reason was initiated way too long ago for any of us to remember. Actually, it was way too long ago for any of us to even witnessed. I know it sounds cheesy, but Jesus is all the reason I need to “pay it forward” to those around me.

His love for me is selfless; so much so that He was willing to give his perfect life so that I could live my less than perfect, far from incredible, only made great by the grace of God life. He wore every one of my sins and bore the consequences of them. He did it without any argument, hesitation, resentment, or regret. That’s about as kind and unexpected as it gets.

I think if God was willing to so boldly love me, it should be no problem for me to boldly bless others and love on my community a bit. I asked 6 fellow bloggers to share with me some of the ways they like to love on their community; some of the ways they pay it forward. Are you ready to hear their responses?! Great! Let’s chat about it!

6 Fun Ways To Pay It Forward

1. Pay for the Starbucks for the person behind you in the drive-thru!

It’s fun and spontaneous. And it’s such a blessing to get to the window and hear that your drink has already been paid for by the car driving away (it has happened to me before)! – Beth from Oak & Oats

I (Lo) have actually had that happen to me at a Starbucks before too and it made. My. Day.

2. Hold doors open for people! 

This is something super small, but I always try to hold the door open for people. – Jordan from North Shore Proper

3. Save them a few bucks!

I leave coupons I’m not going to use next to the product. – Katie from Always, Katie

4.  Notice something special; say something encouraging.

I try to notice special something about random people I come in contact with and say something to them of an encouragement.

Example: while waiting in a line, noticed an older lady wearing a very colorful handmade sweater (perhaps the kind that I would not ever put on if there was anything else I could wear), asked her if she made it & commented on lovely colors. Especially like to notice people in a group (out in public, church, anywhere) who seem to be unnoticed. Sorry, this got long. I enjoy this activity and feel very prompted to do it.

– Lynn from Every Day with the King

5. Share A Meal

When people are asking for money on the street I don’t give them money… but I always buy them a hot meal. – Justine from Life As A Baltimore Girl

6. Support A Cause

Maybe this year you pay it forward by financially supporting movements that are committed helping and bettering the well-being of others. Like  Leslie of  LittleGemsUSA, who pays it forward by sponsoring the education of children in Rwanda.

Or supporting businesses like DoTerra who partner with organizations like Operation Underground Railroad in their mission to rescue victims of sex-trafficking.

Have you ever been on the receiving end of a “pay it forward” act? I know these aren’t the only ways to make it happen. What would you add to the list? 

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36 thoughts on “The Ultimate Pay It Forward + 6 Ways to Follow It Up – Mrs. Lo Tanner”

  1. Great post! I have had my coffee paid for and kept it going by paying for the people behind me at the drive-thru. I especially like giving people compliments and cooking for others!

    1. A good compliment can definitely make someones day! I’ve been on the giving and receiving end of that and it is so fun to be the giver and watch a bad day turn into a good one and a sad demeanor instantly change to a joyful one.

    1. That would be a fun surprise! For a while I used to clip expired coupons and mail them to military families in different countries. They can use generic coupons up to 3 months past the expiration date.

  2. I always used to do #3 when we used coupons in the USA (they don’t really have coupons in Malaysia, unfortunately). I really love #2 because it always feels so special to me when someone holds the door open, and that’s definitely something I try to remember to do as well when I have the chance.

  3. I never seem to have time to be creative about paying it forward, but I do try to help with GoFundMe accounts for people in need or just find little things I can do to be a support or encouragement. Last week, a woman held up a sign that said she was hungry with kids. I felt God tug at me, I pulled over and handed her $5. While I know people panhandle unnecessarily, I don’t usually have any cash on hand, and I usually don’t feel led to do that. I figure taking the minute to talk to her about our church and Jesus while handing her a few dollars plus the conversation I got to have with my daughter about it was worth the $5. I’d rather get “taken advantage of” than walk away from someone in need. But more often, I donate to cancer funds for friends or friends of friends. People need prayer and love in those dark times, and having one more tank of gas to get to chemo or a meal that they didn’t have to prepare, is a lot of love when you need it.

    1. I love the quote you gave, “I’d rather get ‘taken advantage of’ than walk away from someone in need.” That is a powerful place to be at! I think a lot of us our so used to protecting what we have that the idea someone may take it needlessly causes us to back away from situation where God fully intended to use us.

      And yes! Prayer! Especially for those struggling with things like Cancer. I remember talking to my sister one day and telling her every Christian with a Facebook should have a rocking prayer life. You can’t go more than a few hours without (and that’s probably stretching it) without your eyes being falling on a topic of discussion or a situation you could be covering with prayer.

  4. Great ideas! My favorite thing to do is make food for people, whether I deliver it to them or have them over for a meal.

  5. I recently saw the “Pay it Forward” in action in the MOST FUN WAY! It was during our fundraising event for Dell Children’s Medical Global Outreach and Bobby Bones was our entertainer. He asked everyone in the back row of the auditorium to take some money out of their pocket and “pay it forward.” We had no idea if anything would make it to the front row because he also said, “If you need it, you can take it…or you can continue to pay it forward.” I was fortunate to be in the front row and watch the money being thrown by leaps and bounds over each aisle. It was so cool! We ended up making $2,000! Love this pay it forward thing! Thx Alonda for reminding us to take it into our everyday lives!

  6. What am awesome concept at Easter! There’s no greater gift than Christ’s gift on the cross to us. Thank you for bringing this thought out and thank you for the mention of LittleGemsUSA. 😊 💕

  7. I do get touched when people give me their coupons. Even though they may not be using it themselves, just the thought and the time it took for them to do that is touching!

  8. These are so great! I have received the pay it forward of free Starbucks! Love it! And then in return payed for the next persons. I think I need to be doing more of these sorts of things. Thank you for sharing!

    1. I’ve always wanted to be on the receiving end of a Starbucks order! Hahah! No, that’s really cool though! And how awesome that you got to pay it forward too!

  9. I love these ideas. I also make sure to always address people who are wearing name tags by name. I know how hard working with the public can be, and just the small kindness of acknowledging a cashier’s humanity can change his or her day.

  10. These are all great ideas. I try to teach my children to be kind to everyone, everyday. It’s the small little things we do that can make such a difference in a person’s day.

    1. I love seeing kids stepping out in kindness. It makes such a difference. Sometimes a “good morning” from me goes in one ear and out the other. But when my 4 year old says “good morning” he melts hearts and cures frowning faces.
      Kids are the best!

  11. Thank you so much for joining us in the link-up! These are WONDERFUL ways to pay it forward! I’ve had someone pay for my drink at Starbucks before, and it just made me feel so loved.. even though I didn’t know that person. Maybe I felt His love shine through them 🙂 These are such great reminders for us all!

  12. I like to let people into traffic when they are clearly stuck and waiting for someone to be kind. Paying kindness forward can start with really simple things.

  13. These are wonderful, practical ideas. I loved your precious intro about the reason for all of this. You are so exceedingly right!

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