The first thing that I would do with $1,000 to pay forward is I would find a homeless person, take them out for dinner to the restaurant of their choice. Then, I would take them and buy them nice outfit. Then, I would offer to drive them to the nearest shelter or rehabilitation center. Are there any rehab centers for homeless people these days? I know that many of them are mentally handicapped, but some of them just need a second chance and someone to motivate them to pick up their life again.
Whatever was left with the money, I would find a single mother in my church and give her an anonymous gift card to Target or Wal-mart so she can buy gifts for her children. I urge you to think of those without shelter and those single mothers out there who bust it every day to put food on the table for their children.
I don’t think there’s any right or wrong way to handle paying forward $1,000. You can do a lot with that amount of money, and you could ultimately turn someone’s life around if used the right way. I would strive to target two or three people rather than just giving it to a big charity. The concept of “paying it forward” is an interesting ideal. It was made most popular with the movie, “Pay It Forward” with Nicholson and Hunt. The funny thing is that we rarely think about giving back to others when we have been given something. When a good deed is done for us or we are given a gracious gift, we usually feel humbled and inspired by the gesture, but it’s not programmed in us to go and pay back the favor to someone else. In fact, I think we’re more inclined to want to pay back the favor to the giver. We feel humbled if someone gets us a gift for Christmas, but we did not get them something. Immediately, we think that we should go out and buy them something. That is not the essence of giving. If you did not have the thought of giving to that person in the first place, it makes it no better to give back just because they gave to you.
There’s something to think about for this holiday season.