Pray It Forward

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Carolyne Swayze
Carolyne Swayze


There is a phenomenon going on currently called “pay it forward.” The premise is, if you do something good for someone else, you pay it forward and good comes back to you. For example, more than once, while crossing the San Francisco Bay Bridge, I have reached the toll gate and told the car ahead paid my toll. I recently saw a man in the grocery store give his change to the person behind him, an obvious mother with many mouths to feed, etc. The premise is lacking in some respect as there should be no Quid Pro Quo when helping someone. We should give freely when we can, without any expectation of receiving something in return, but… I digress.

I have received many blessings over my life that I don’t necessarily think I deserved. Conversely, there have been some consequences that I did deserve, yet some escaped receiving. I have questioned this often while at the same time understanding that a thing is just what it is. Good things happen to bad people, and bad things happen to good people all the time, it's just the way things are.

During my formative years, I was raised by Evangelical grandparents. While I have not remained in the church, I have maintained the faith, at least, tried. I can see and hear my grandmother praying regularly. People would come to visit, and she’d say, “Pray for us.” I recall thinking, “why is she asking people to pray for us, there’s nothing wrong.” She was praying it forward. She knew her children and grandchildren, no matter how well intentioned, given our human frailties would fall at some point by the wayside. She prayed it forward on our behalf. I for one am grateful.

So today I write the song Pray It Forward. Hope you enjoy.




Lord, hear my prayer today, to lend a helping hand

Let my words on High be heard, and I will do the best I can.

When into this world I came, you heard my mother’s plea

She prayed it forward in my name, and you remembered me.

So let me pray it forward, Lord and help someone else today.

Use me as you will for all the blessings I can’t repay.

Once my journey got too rough, so worried I couldn’t sleep.

But someone prayed it forward long enough, and you made the

mountain’s climb less steep.

So let me pray it forward, Lord, and help someone else today.

Use me as you will for all the blessings I can’t repay.

Pray for all children lost today, guide them Lord ‘til they find their way.

Help my neighbor, and lift up the poor, heal the sick, and Lord please

send the cures.

Help my brothers, help my sisters too, help all known Lord to you.

Pray it Forward Lrd to thee, that we may live in peace and harmony.