Pay It Forward

Great Harvest

A couple of weeks ago, I witnessed the most beautiful thing I had ever experienced within the community. I was sitting at Great Harvest, contemplating the lessons I was going to teach that week and all that was going on in my life.

It all changed when an older gentleman entered the store. He walked in and kept smiling at everyone. That’s what stood out to me the most – the grin that spread across his entire face, crinkling his eyes at the corners. Although he was swathed in biking gear from head to toe, it was obvious that he hadn’t had access to a shower in quite some time. He quietly asked the cashier if he could have a cup of water and sat down at a nearby table. It dawned on me that the man was homeless, which isn’t very common in Cache Valley, or anywhere else I had lived, for that matter.

A woman picking up a large order of cinnamon rolls glanced at the man and briskly walked to a table at the back of the store. She kept stealing glances at him. Mustering up enough courage, she approached the man and inquired if she could buy him a sandwich. He was flabbergasted. He pointed to himself and swiftly replied, “It’s not even my birthday, I can’t let you do that.” The woman insisted, and he finally agreed. He walked up to the cash register and proceeded to get the largest sandwich I had ever seen, completely decked out with a variety of cheeses, vegetables, and meat. The man was beside himself. His eyes were full of tears, and he put his arm around the kind woman. He told her, quite matter-of-factly, that the world should be full of more people like her. Here was the real kicker: the woman didn’t boast about her good deed. A truly selfless person doesn’t need to brag or show-off their kindness and generosity – it defeats the purpose.

Saying that my eyes were truly opened seems so cliche, yet here I am, stating that very thing. The outlook on my own life, worrying about my hectic, busy schedule, and truly appreciating what I have were completely changed. After seeing such a wonderful act of kindness, I encourage everyone to pay it forward to someone in need. I know I sure will be.

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