Seriously. You want to leave your server a little note about salvation and the love of Christ, I know. Put it with the tip. And tip well. Tip generously.
You know what else? It is embarrassing that the most hated shift at any restaurant is the Sunday lunch shift. That waitress that you are treating like some kind of heathen for having the audacity to work on ‘the Lord’s Day’? She wouldn’t have to be there if you people didn’t patronize the establishment that day. Maybe, just maybe, she would prefer to be having a discussion about the morning’s sermon with her family instead of bringing your unruly rug rat another package of crackers to crush into the floor.
Ahem. Yeah, that may have struck a chord or 12 with me.
Years ago, I was a waitress. I missed many a Sunday morning service because I was scheduled to work that day. We rotated the dreaded Sunday shift because we all hated it. There was a buffet. Dante left out that particular level of hell. The Sunday lunch buffet.
Families began to arrive around 11, still dressed in their Sunday best. Some even clutching their Bibles. I guess they thought the sight of it might bring some of us around. They’d look at me with disdain when I smiled an offered to show them to a table. You would have thought I slapped them when I asked if they would prefer smoking or non. (Yes, I’m old enough to have waited tables when there were still smoking sections at restaurants.)
They wouldn’t make eye contact while placing their drink orders. Half the time they wouldn’t even sit at the table; only pausing to deposit their purses and accouterments before making a bee line for the salad bar. So I would dutifully place water with lemon at each place setting while they drowned some croutons and hard-boiled eggs in ranch dressing with a couple of salad leaves for garnish. Do you have any idea how hard it is to bus a table with 5 ranch ponds on it?
And heaven forbid I try to clear some of the extra plates during the meal. Oh no! They aren’t finished with that one. So I was forced to watch in horror as the various sauces and drippings soaked into my nice white starched table cloths. Which, by the way, do not double as napkins no matter how convenient that corner is. I eventually convinced the manager that we could really just skip the tablecloths and fresh carnations on Sundays.
I did add my 2 cents to a family’s discussion regarding salvation and the sinful nature of man. It was met with a stunned silence. They never came back. I guess they couldn’t process the idea that the heathen waitress might have some understanding of the concept of grace and the eternal nature of Christ’s forgiveness.
And no, I am not giving you a doggie bag for the last plate you just filled from the buffet. Yes, I’d rather throw the food away than let you get away with that crap.
At the end of the meal, I was sure to find crackers and tomatoes ground into the carpet, cloth napkins that someone had blown their nose into, an empty vase (Did you eat the carnation?), and no tip. Although sometimes there’d be a tract. Way to show your love and generosity.
Jesus washed his disciples feet. Their nasty, dirty, tired feet. Jesus stood at the side of an adulteress doomed to be stoned to death. Jesus gave the keys to paradise to a thief sentenced to die on a cross, and yet too many of His followers can’t be bothered to drop a couple of measly dollars on the table for someone that served them. Too many can’t even treat their servers with basic human kindness and decency.
As a Christian, I am ashamed of my brothers and sisters that behave this way. You were called to seek and save the lost, to be a light to the world, to love your neighbor. Guess what? The waiter/waitress is your neighbor. The store clerk is your neighbor.
The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel ; The Lord our God is one Lord: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.” (Mark 12: 29-31 KJV)
In case the language is a little challenging, here’s the Jennifer Simplified Version(JSV?): and Jesus said “Don’t be a dick“