An excellent thought from Rev. Todd of Shoreline Gathering Point:

Pay It Forward Ever have one of those days...

Todd MacDonald 15 May 19:35
Pay It Forward

Ever have one of those days that just started off kind of “meh” and kept on until something shook you out of it? I had that yesterday. While preparing for a funeral service at St. John the Baptist Roman Catholic Church in New Glasgow, I was having a “meh” day even though I was really looking forward to seeing my friend Father Gary MacPherson. Every time I get together with Father Gary, my spirit lightens…he calls me his little protty buddy and I try to convince him that he is more evangelical than I am. Father Garry is a wonderful man of God and a very faithful servant but Monday, I saw how deep his love ran at the service.

The Mass of Christian Burial has several readings and one particular reading was to be done by a family member. The reading was out of the Book of Lamentations and can be, at the best of times, very powerful but add to it the loss of a loved one and the words can bring the best of us to tears…and that is exactly what happened. I was in the foyer watching as the poor gal who was reading break down and I fought the temptation to go up to the front to help. That is when I saw Father Gary come down from where he was sitting and offer comfort and strength to her. Father Gary did not take the reading and finish it for her, rather he wrapped his arm around her and spoke softly to her in a way so calm and reassuring that I was almost embarrassed to be listening in on the conversation because it felt like I was intruding on a private discussion (his microphone was still on during the conversation). She was able to start the reading once again but Father Gary did not leave her side until the reading was done and, even then, he made sure she was well on her way back to her chair before he turned to go back to his own place on the platform.

That was the turning point of the day for me. It was a side of my friend I had not seen before. I have heard him speak in the past and had the opportunity to share and kibitz with him but what I saw brought a tear to my eye. I never doubted for a moment that Father Gary was a wonderful man of God but the depth of caring overwhelmed me. As I said in my last post, not a single church or denomination has the monopoly on salvation…the more I look for God’s love in this world the more I find it. The more I see people like Father Gary leading with his heart or Pastor Jerry loving on a community with all he has or Pastor Keith opening up an empty basement to help the less fortunate and so many others in this world who reflect that love to their fellow brothers and sisters; the more I thank God for His message of love and compassion. If we stop and take a look around us at the good being done within His world, we find there is a lot less time to seek out or even point out the faults of others in our society.

My hockey coach in college believed that the best defense was a strong offense. The more time you spent in the opponent’s zone, the less time you spent defending. Satan plays in the negative zone of our society and if we can put the pressure on, that is resist the urge to tear down another individual or group and instead take the battle to him by coming alongside in love and compassion to those who are in need, then the Kingdom will benefit. Yes, it does take a greater effort to reach out than it does to sit by idle but, in the end, the rewards are worth it.

To Father Gary, thanks for taking my “meh” day and transforming it into a very wonderful day and for all the rest of you who have chosen to make a difference in someone’s day with a selfless act of compassion, may God bless you richly. My prayer is that God will place in each of your paths an opportunity to bless someone everyday and that you may be that someone special to change another’s “meh” day into a wonderful day…pay it forward.

Shalom

Todd

(If you wish to read more of his stuff follow his Take it or Leave it Facebook page)

 

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