One thing you all should know about servers at restaurants is this……it’s going to sting…..are you ready?
If you’re not a regular (someone who comes in the same time ever week and sits in the same section and orders the same thing)……if you’re not a regular, your server doesn’t care about you. It’s nothing personal, actually that’s sort of the gist of it. Guests are merely dollar signs to servers. Sure they’ll treat you like kings and queens but as soon as that credit card receipt is signed you’re simply taking up precious space until the next party of four dollars sits down. Is this taught by the companies/restaurants in training? No. This is an unspoken norm that I see played out every day. I’m ashamed to say that I get caught up in it.
One night, a week or so ago I had two people sit in my section. It was close to closing time, I was tired, I wanted to go home and be with my wife….needless to say, I didn’t care about these people. I walked up to greet them, put on my fake server smile and asked if I could get them something to drink. The guy informed me that he was an employee of Chilis. That changed everything. Employees get 50% off their bill and usually tip really good so my demeanor shifted a little. I was refilling drinks, chips and working my tail off for that one table because the little dollars just turned into bigger dollars.
Later in the meal I stopped by to see if they needed anything. The girl had gone to the restroom and the guy looks up at me and says, “Hey man, sorry I’ve had such a bad attitude this entire meal. I got some really bad news today.” Oh no. This isn’t good. My dollars were turning back into people. People with real problems, real families and real souls. I had a choice. I could blow it off and say, “sorry bro, more sweet tea?” or I could truly serve “the least of these.”
I said, “I’m so sorry man, what happened?” He said that he just found out that he got rejected by the law school he’s been dreaming of going to since he was a little boy. I replied, “Wow. That’s awful man. Well, I know some people with connections to some great schools in Georgia. I’m a pastor, here’s my card. Call me and we’ll grab coffee or something and talk about what’s next for you.” He looks up at me, “You’re a pastor? Me and my girlfriend have been looking for a church to go to around here.” From there on I told him about Crosspointe and where we meet.
I’m not sure if that guy will come to church, or even call to talk about what’s next in life for him. I’m not sure if that was even the reason for the lesson I learned that evening. I am convinced of one thing though, we all get caught up in whatever it is that we do and devalue people. Pastors devalue people to numbers. Serves devalue people to dollars. Politicians devalue people to votes. So how do we change that? How do we see the value in people?
We serve them. Whether it be with time, money, work or refills of sweet tea, we serve them.
35 For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36 I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ 37 Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? 38 And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? 39 And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’40 And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’
Josiah and Jordan