Recently, we celebrated my wife’s birthday at a popular steakhouse here in San Antonio. It was fun taking a trip to the hopping downtown area. In fact, Tim Allen was performing live right across the street at the Majestic Theater.
Once we were seated, the head waiter shared the specials of the night and took our drink orders. We were together as a family and enjoying the beautiful view of downtown San Antonio from a nearby window.
When it was time to refill our glasses with water, Nathan, the beverage server, was ready to perform his duties. He was very friendly and enthusiastic about his work.
However, there was something peculiar about Nathan. He seemed a little quirky, and it appeared that he had rehearsed most of his lines. It was as if the management team had spent many hours training him for this position.
They wanted him to succeed.
Along with his quirkiness, Nathan was a bit clumsy and sometimes worked too fast.
It happened! When removing silverware from the table, the fork and spoon slipped out of his hand and clanked onto the hardwood floor.
He quickly apologized and I said … “It’s no big deal, Nathan. We know you are trying hard.”
As he walked by my wife, he said to her: “Mrs. Flores, he’s a keeper!”
The Power of Appreciation
I am obviously sharing this story with you for a reason. You see … I am very proud of Nathan and his work ethic. He is not the head waiter or even a waiter on this team. He is in charge of making sure we have water and removing dirty plates from the table.
Yet … he is committed to doing his job well and in a friendly manner.
When he was working other tables in the same quirky and clumsy way, I observed many of the customers completely ignoring him.
They should be ashamed!
This young man, who was probably in his late 20s, is showing up to work and doing his best. He deserves to be appreciated by others!
When we finished our dinner, I made it a point to have a private conversation with Nathan to tell him how much we appreciated his work. I shook his hand firmly for several seconds, and I gave him a tip for his commitment to customer service.
I’m only sharing the restaurant experience because the Lord keeps putting me in places where I can show appreciation and kindness to others.
Instead of looking for defects in others, I spend more time today focusing on the good they are doing.
My wife was happy with her birthday celebration. The steaks were cooked to perfection, and the kids were fighting over the chocolate cake.
However, this experience was made even better because Nathan reminded us that every human is important and deserves to be treated with kindness, love, and respect.