Sundaes, waitresses, and Jesus

A young boy went into a diner. The waitress asked for his order. “How much for a sundae?”, he asked. “Four dollars.”

The boy searched through his change and started putting coins on the counter, tallying up his total as he went along. The waitress was very busy. She rolled her eyes but didn’t say anything. 

Before he finished, he paused. “How much for a normal ice cream?” “Three dollars,” she answered. “Okay, I’ll have that.” Assuming he didn’t have enough for the sundae, she got him his less expensive ice cream.

He ate it happily and left. When she returned to clear his bowl she noticed something. He had left a one dollar tip! 

She had assumed he didn’t have the full four dollars for the sundae and therefore had to settle for regular ice cream. But he had intentionally downgraded his dessert so he could leave her a tip. Three dollars for ice cream, and one dollar for the waitress. The thoughtfulness of a child!*

Jesus said: “It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35).

To be “blessed” is to experience God’s favour. A lot of people think that abundant material possessions means God has blessed you. I’m not saying all material possessions are bad. But Jesus’ reminds us that it is a greater sign of God’s favour and blessing when you give.

Perhaps you scratch your head at a story about a boy, some ice cream, and a tip. But I think it’s a daily, down-to-earth example of giving rather than just getting—and, as a result, turning one good thing into two.

It is more blessed to give than to receive.


–On July 4, 2021 I announced a new podcast at the church I pastor. It’s called “The Word at Westminster.” It’s all about learning and living God’s word and includes talks, interviews, sermons and more. You can subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts (Apple Podcasts/iTunes, Spotify, Google Podcasts or Stitcher). Or you can listen to the welcome message here which tells you what to expect and why a podcast.

–*This is a re-telling of a version found at Accessed on July 2, 2021.

–Bible quotes are from the NIV. 

You can also listen and subscribe wherever you enjoy podcasts:

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