Like many do on Thursday nights, I went out for half priced wings at Buffalo Wild Wings with my close friend and her daughter. Okay, so I guess most people don’t go out with my friend, but I think you probably understand what I’m getting at.
Anyways, last night we decided to try out a different B-Dubs than we usually go to, just for new times sake. We were seated and then our waitress came to our table and took our drink and appetizer order (okay, we had lots of coupons – but she didn’t know). Unfortunately, that was probably one of three times that she actually interacted with us.
Most of our food selections were brought out by other servers or by managers. Our waitress was too busy chatting with her friends (at one of her tables) to pay attention to us – or the other three tables I noticed her occasionally glance at. Since we’re human, it was really frustrating. In fact, I even thought about leaving her absolutely no tip (you see, with all of our coupons, the total came to $5.68).
“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. – Ephesians 4:31-32″
I was angry and I was annoyed. How could this girl be totally ignoring us when the majority of her income is based on the money we leave behind? How could she be so distracted with her social life that she literally just left us sitting there, relying on her coworkers to do her job? And then I heard it. The little voice that we all hear sometimes when God’s trying to teach us a lesson.
It hit me, about three minutes after the waitress took the check. That thought, “Well, Cassi, if God treated you like this and gave you what you actually deserved – after you ignored him for years at a time – you’d be on a highway straight to hell.”
See, who are we to choose whom we share God’s grace and compassion with when he is willing to forgive us time and time again for the very same trespasses? Who are we to ignore him and know, without a doubt, that his grace will save us from all of our wrong doings and ignorance? Ephesians 4 tells us to “be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as Christ God forgave you,” so who are we to pick and choose who we demonstrate kindness to?
In the end, I wrote her a note, wishing her well and shoved a twenty dollar bill between the folded single and five dollar bill, hoping she wouldn’t notice it until I was far away. The point of this lesson revealed itself quickly, showing me that I don’t get to pick and choose who I forgive.
So remember that on those stressful days, in those stressful moments, when you want nothing more than to feel hatred towards someone. Remember that we need to demonstrate God’s grace, even when the people around us “don’t deserve it” in our eyes. As far as I can see, I don’t deserve anything God has done for me, yet his grace pours down around me.