Christians and Tipping Part 1
Another night at the restaurant that I work at and I try to get myself ready for the divine appointments/ conversations that God has setup for me once again. I begin to setup my section and greet my fellow coworkers with messages that are meant to point them towards our Father and then the manager calls us over to the line up. Roll call…check! Now for housekeeping to let us know what they expect, and gives us the parties that are in town or joining us that shift; and then it comes. The manager announces that there is a Christian convention in town, local Church, or ___________ Christian event coming to the restaurant and the groans begin. This time was a little different though after the meeting a young lady that I worked with asks an honest and long-deserved question,
“Why are Christian people the worst tippers?” OUCH!
It’s so true. As a whole, Christians are thought of by restaurant workers to be among the absolute worst tippers of any single identifiable group. Sundays after church, and during events like the one mentioned, Christians go out in large numbers, perhaps unaware of how poorly they are representing the gospel to a very specific and largely “un-reached” and hurting people group, their servers. This is not a letter from a server complaining about how some people tip, I do well at my job. This is a post from one brother in Christ to other Christians, to inform them of the horrendous damage we do to the Gospel on a regular basis. Probably the best answer to why we are often the worst tippers is very likely, “ignorance.” Living such vastly different lifestyles than many servers and bartenders, my belief (or honest hope) is that the average Christian is simply unaware that 20% of one’s total bill is the expected minimum gratuity one should ever leave in a full-service restaurant. Anything less is personally offensive to the person who served you. Many family-oriented, frugality-minded Christians eat out infrequently it seems, and it is sometimes a large indulgence for them to even go to a restaurant (I understand that, but your non-Christian servers don’t). Especially after giving at church on Sundays, the tip is an easy place to begin to cut back. I have even heard more than a few professing Christians say, “I gave God 10%, why should you get more?” Others may get away with leaving less, but for the Christian it comes down to the fact that personally offending a person all but destroys your chance of them being open to the Gospel (Pr 18:19). For the Christian, it must never be an issue of whether the server even deserved a good tip or not – do you deserve heaven? No! We are called to reflect this in our dealings with the world, by being both merciful and generous to those who may not always be deserving of it either.
What do you think?
Have you seen this?
Are you a bad tipper?