My family and I live in the Thumb Area of Michigan, and currently, in a small city called Caro. One of the things we love to do is try out new restaurants. We do not eat out no where near as much as we use to because we have created a budget and we do our best to stick to it.
The restaurants we frequent the most, we try to use the same server every time. This allows us to get to know the server, the server to get to know us and allows us to shine Jesus into their lives.
Throughout the years, that I have been in full time ministry, I have often asked some of the servers we have come in contact with, if they enjoy working Sunday afternoons for the Church crowds, and almost 100% of the time we are told no. At first I was completely astonished to hear this. So of course my next question to them is “why?”. Very few actually answered.
I have a pastor friend, down in the sunshine state of Florida, who use to be a server and currently his wife still is. They both mentioned that the Church crowd, on Sundays after Church Services lets out, are by far the rudest people and stingiest tippers and that servers PLEAD to not work Sundays for the Church crowd. I could not believe what I was hearing!!!! And to make matters worse, I have heard this repeatedly, time and time again, throughout the years.
At the heart of every Follower of Christ, should be giving. And no, I am not just talking about giving towards your local Church. That will be a different blog for a different time. Unfortunately, Christians have given themselves a bad name when it comes to financially blessing those who work in the restaurant industry. As Followers of Christ, Scripture-alone-is our guiding document on tipping our servers well. See Acts 20:35, 1st Timothy 5:18, Luke 10:7, Proverbs 3:27 and Proverbs 28:22.
The one Scripture that I feel the Lord showed me, during my personal Bible study one day, is Proverbs 11:24; Give freely and become more wealthy; be stingy and lose everything (NLT). I am not opposed to people being wealthy or building wealth. What I am opposed to to though, is someone calling themselves a Christian and then continuing to be stingy when they know that God would not be pleased with the amount they are tipping their servers. “But what if we get bad service?” Is usually the next question that is asked. That is irrelevant. Luke 6:31 tells us to treat others the way we would like to be treated. So if you put yourself in the servers shoes, and you have bills to pay and a family to support, wouldn’t you want to be tipped well?
Its time for the Church to change their “tipping habits”. The going rate, nationwide, for tipping is 18-20%. My wife and I will leave no less the 25% no matter how bad the service or food may be. Why you may ask? 1) Because my faith and hope is in Christ and Christ alone and I will be obedient to what He tells me to do. My wife and I will not go out to eat unless we can afford it and it is budgeted accordingly. 2) We just might win this server to Jesus Christ. Oh!!! What a day that WILL be!!!!