Kindness is the superpower that makes the world go ‘round.

It’s happened to all of us: you’ve loaded up your shopping cart or ordered a service, only to reach for your wallet and realize that it’s not there. It can be an embarrassing and anxiety-inducing scenario, one that sets the tone for the day.

A man faced a similar situation one day when he couldn’t remember his new PIN at a gas station. But when a stranger stepped in to help, he did more than save this man’s day.

A Routine Gas Station Stop

two men at a gas station

One morning, bright and early, a man named Tyson Crawley pulled up to a service station. He filled his truck with diesel and topped up his jerrycan with petrol. Then he entered the station and ordered a couple of iced coffees. When he went to pay, things went sideways.

Crawley had transferred all his money to a new bank account the night before and realized he didn’t have his new bank card on him. He tried to pay from a joint account but, for the life of him, could not remember the PIN.

“After searching through my iPhone bank app to figure out how to reset my PIN I had failed,” Crawley recalled in a Facebook post. “My dog was barking wildly, I had to get to work, and I was starting to freak.”

A Surprise Gesture

As Crawley began panicking, a man who had purchased a coffee right before him and exited the store witnessed the ordeal. He came back inside.

“Do you need some money?” he asked.

Crawley said no, that he just couldn’t remember his code, and it was okay. The man said it was fine, and then walked around to the register. When Crawley realized what he was doing, he insisted it was okay; he had the money but just needed to figure out his PIN.

“It’s a free country, isn’t it?” the stranger asked. “I can help a brother out, can’t I?”

Crawley was stunned. The bill was $110, but eventually, he accepted the kind man’s help. He then passed him the receipt and asked him to write down his number so that he could contact him and pay him back immediately.

Another Unexpected Twist

The attendant, whom Crawley said was just as stunned as he was, passed the man a pen. The stranger wrote on it, folded it down, and handed it to Crawley. Crawley was so overwhelmed and grateful that he insisted they take a photo together. Then the man left.

“I turned around to the attendant and she said, ‘Well that doesn’t happen every day,’” Crawley recalled. “I turned around to leave, and he was gone, literally gone. I went outside and could not see him anywhere.”

It was then that Crawley opened the receipt to look at the number and he received another shock. Instead of a phone number, the man had written down his name along with three game-changing words.

“John. Pass it on.”

receipt

Paying It Forward

Crawley wrapped his Facebook post with an important reminder.

“Please be beautiful people, and remember it’s not about keeping up with the joneses, having the biggest house, most expensive car, the largest bank account, but work with each other, after all, what is money compared to the quality of human life?” he wrote.

Money comes and goes, but who we are as people and how we interact with one another is the essence of our being. Helping each other out when times are tough, even when we don’t know the person, is what makes us human, and what can make this life so beautiful.

So the next time you’re in a position to pay it forward, why not? Go ahead and buy that coffee for the person behind you. Pay that parking meter that’s about to expire for a total stranger. Donate toys to a toy drive, leave a super generous tip, or give a secret gift.

At the end of the day, it’s how we show up for each other and help one another out that matters. Everything else is just extra.