He was filling out a check for breakfast at Cracker Barrel. No judging! That place has some great pancakes. Anyway, back to the story. My husband was signing his name and then moved the pen up to assign a tip to the server. I watched as he calculated a 50 percent tip and added that to the total.
“Um, Adam?” I was a server myself, so that money he was throwing away was my own hard-earned tips.
He gave me a look that basically told me he was listening, but he already knew exactly what I was going to say. Because the discussion was nothing new.
“Are you sure you want to leave that much? We don’t really have a lot of money to do that.”
I love my husband. We’re young kids that got married before most even think about settling down. And times like these, my young husband impresses me with his insight. I hate it sometimes. Maybe it’s because I don’t like being wrong, maybe it’s because it’s exactly what I need to hear. I don’t know, but this situation was no different.
“Kim, we’ve been blessed. We should bless other people with what we have; it’s our responsibility to do that.”
So he left the tip. And I wondered why we went out to eat if it cost us so much money. But he was right.
He’s always been a good tipper. I thought maybe it was the way he was raised. His family tips well, that’s true, but he’s taken it to a whole new level.
A friend once told me that the first thing you’re attracted to about your spouse becomes the thing that irritates you most. That’s not necessarily untrue for me. I was first impressed by Adam’s generosity—his willingness to pay for people’s lunch, his unique gifts, his large tips—but once we were newly married I became concerned with finances. I had to learn a lot about trust.
So as I watched him tip server after server generously, I missed the lesson in all of it.
What my husband taught me indirectly is something I wish more people would understand, not just about tipping well, but about God.
When Adam tips, he doesn’t tip based on the server’s performance. What he’s saying instead is: “I care about you, and nothing you do will change how much money you get from me. I want to bless you with what I have.”
That gave me a deeper understanding of grace. Grace is giving us something good we don’t deserve. God is saying “I love you, not because of who you are, but who I AM. And I want to bless you with what I have.”