Is it ok for a Christian not to leave a tip? I don’t believe so. I cringe when I hear about banter from waiters and waitresses who complain that Sunday after church is the worst time to work due to the lack of tips or receiving a tract instead of a tip.
The story about a St. Louis pastor who scrawled on her Applebee’s receipt, “I give God 10% why do you get 18.” and then signed Pastor above her signature after leaving $0 in the tip section. She already paid an automatic gratuity since she was in a party of 20.
Appalling, what a way to tarnish your witness for Christ. Atheists have run rampant with this story. The pastor, Alois Bell, has since apologized and the waitress responsible for the leak of the receipt has been fired.
1 Peter 2:15-16 says, “For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people. Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God,” (ESV).
Do good. Be salt and light. Tip well. You are a representative of Jesus to the person who is serving you. If you think the service is bad, say so, but still tip well. This is a good guide on tipping. Here are some tipping don’ts.
Full disclosure, I’m not perfect at this. Recently when I was out with a friend for lunch, I paid with cash at the register and I forgot to go back to the table. I was horrified when I realized this (at home), but the next time I’m there I’ll double my tip (it’s usually the same waitress every time I go at lunch).
Tipping well is one way of showing God’s love and grace in a practical way. He gives it freely and without condition, and so should we. Mark Driscoll, pastor of Mars Hill Church in Seattle, WA made a great point that when we tip well even the service is bad and don’t deserve it it’s like God giving us His grace even though we don’t deserve it.
Share some of your tipping dos and don’ts in the comment section.