(Photo by Selma Komisky)
Another Way to Pay It Forward
By Zelda Dominguez
I’ve heard it said that we are what we’ve learned from our parents. Examples shown, or not shown, and in turn, relayed to us. Those thoughts, perspectives, habits, or beliefs which are emotionally or culturally passed down through our families are generational patterns. It’s the lens we see the world through, shaped by our families. Now, do we have to stay that way? The answer is no. There is something greater that’s been given to us. But the question is will we receive it?
In Matthew 8:21-35. A man owed the king ten thousand talents. He could not pay the overwhelming amount, so he begged for mercy – and the king canceled the debt. The man then met a fellow servant who owed him much less, a hundred denarii. It’s four months’ wages. (In modern money, it is $5,800) The man demanded payment and had his fellow servant thrown in prison when he could not pay.
When the king heard about this, he called for the first servant. “You wicked servant,” he said, “I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?”
Now realize that 10,000 talents are 200,000 years of labor! It is 60,000,000 working days. In modern money, it is $3.48 billion. A significant debt he could never pay. But the king had mercy on him, forgiving him of what he owed and withholding the punishment he deserved. But, the servant didn’t pay it forward and show the same forgiveness and kindness to someone who owed him less money, 100 denari.
God is like the King in this parable. He paid a debt we could not ever pay on our own! Jesus paid our debt by enduring our punishment upon the cross, for us to be forgiven, and set free from our sins. The bible says the wages of sin is death. We deserve death, yet, because of his great love for us, Jesus cleared our debt and promises eternal life.
In turn, he wants us to pay it forward and remember what He has done for us. Acknowledging we are sinners, and accepting his free gift of grace. We don’t have to stay as we are. He offers us new life. But it is our choice.
2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
Titus 3:5 He saved us, not because of the righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He washed away our sins, giving us a new birth and new life through the Holy Spirit.
Ezekiel 11:19 And I will give them singleness of heart and put a new spirit within them. I will take away their stony, stubborn heart and give them a tender, responsive heart,
Secondly, He wants us to tell others what He has done for you and me.
Mark16:15 He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.”
Acts 1:8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere
And lastly, He calls us to forgive, as He forgave us.
Ephesians 4:32 Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.
Matthew 6:12 And forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us.
Matthew 18: 34 And should not you have had mercy on your fellow servant, as I had mercy on you?
Everyone knows what regifting is. Giving a gift one has received to someone else. This is one time regifting is a good idea. Forgiveness is regifting the grace that God gave you. Regift mercy, regift kindness, and so on and so on.