Easter, Faith, Five Minute Friday scribblings

Settle: Settling the Bill

@JeanneTakenaka +Jeanne Takenaka

Our Five Minute Friday prompt this week is—SETTLE. This largely unedited “rough draft” form of writing stretches this perfectionist, in the best of ways. We write for five minutes on a given word. If you’re interested in learning more about 5-Minute Fridays, check out the Five Minute Friday website. Or, click on the link at the bottom of this post. As you read my simpler Friday posts, I hope you’ll join in the conversation!

I could have gone so many ways with this word! But, here’s my slightly-over-five-minutes offering.


My grandfather was a hard man. He loved his family, but he was strict and tight with his finances when it came to certain aspects of spending money.

Shortly after hubs and I were married, we were stationed in Alabama. We would sometimes go to visit my grandfather and his wife. One Sunday they took us out for a nice brunch. My grandfather insisted on settling the bill.

The thing was, he was not a good tipper. I won’t tell you what he left, but it was insulting.

I’ve worked in the food industry. I know how hard servers work. So, I went in and left a generous tip for our server.

When I came back out, my grandfather asked, “Did you go back in and leave more of a tip?”

I stood straighter. Looked him in the eye, and with only the slightest quiver in my voice, I replied, “Yes, I did. She gave us good service, and she deserved it.” I was nervous about what his response might be, but he turned and headed to the car.

Jesus is so much richer than my grandfather. He’s good, sacrificing, and generous.

There’s no way for us to settle our debt with God. Jesus is the only One who can pay the bill our sin has incurred. 

And in the paying of that bill, He’s given us the gift of eternal life with Him. Even if salvation was the “only” benefit to come from believing the gospel, from accepting Jesus as Lord, it would be enough. 

Jesus gives so much more. He’s given us grace to walk through our days.

To make mistakes and to learn.

To grow in the grace and knowledge of Him.

Jesus has given us His acceptance and the benefits of being embraced in the family of God.

He’s given us the gift of faith, so we can know Him more.

And, He’s gifted us with His unconditional love. There’s nothing, no-thing, we can do that will make him stop loving us. His benefits are much better than the tips I left for servers over the years. Even the one that went to a certain server in Alabama.

As we enter into this weekend —as we prepare to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection—may we remember that He has settled our bill. He has left the tip . . .with us. Grace, faith, and love.

What about you? When have you had the chance to be generous in giving to someone else? How have you seen Jesus lavish you with His love?

Click to Tweet: Jesus is the only One who can pay the bill our sin has incurred. 

Come read other great posts on Five Minute Friday—Settle

25 thoughts on “Settle: Settling the Bill”

    1. Andrew, when we give to those who have less than us, we bless God’s heart. I like what you said: Giving is the best gift one can receive. May I have that mindset more consistently.

      I’m praying for you and Barb, my friend.


  1. I love your grace with the server rather than the stingy tip your grandfather gave. Makes me think of a meal I had with my fiance on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. We had the most fabulous of meals, and the waiter was amazing. But my hubs-to-be only left 10%. Yikes! I had to instruct him that when in America, we tip like Americans, and not like Brits (which he is).

    Grace – it’s worth sharing a bit of ours to make someone else happy, especially as Jesus has settled our bill in full.

    Your neighbor at FMF (#3 this week).


    1. Amy, I know European customs are different when it comes to tipping. You are a wise woman to help your fiancé understand how American customs are. May we all be generous with Grace. I hope you have a beautiful Easter!


  2. I love the way you used the story about your grandfather to talk about Jesus settling our debt of sin. My husband and I typically over-tip, feeling the need to compensate for so many others that tip badly, especially other Christians!


    1. Bethany, we have to receive really bad service to not give a good tip. 🙂 We tend to over-tip as well, for many of the same reasons you shared here. 🙂 May we be a light in the lives of those who serve us.

      I hope your Easter is a special one!


    1. Anita, you’re right. It does take bravery to stand up to the world and live a forgiven, sanctified life. I’m so thankful God enables us to do so. Thanks for your words here. Have a beautiful Easter, my friend!


  3. I was raised Dutch, and to be careful with my dollars, but the more I learn of and see and experience God’s generosity to me, the easier it is to break out of the mold and be generous to others. 🙂


    1. Annette, we were raised to be careful with our funds too. God gave me a husband who is naturally generous. I’ve learned much from him. 🙂 May we both continue to grow in being generous to others.

      Have a great Easter!


    1. Mickey, thank you for your encouraging words. I’m with you…so thankful God settled my sin debt! I’m always a little amazed (okay, a lot amazed) to know the He calls us friend!


  4. This has brought a memory flooding back, Jeanne. As a teenager I too, was once out with my grandfather for a meal and when we were ready to go he left a single penny as a tip! I was so embarrassed I pretended to use the restroom and left a few dollars I had in my purse! I hadn’t thought of that in years! I still love to give…not just tips but compliments, gifts, cards. But I can be kind of like my grandpa when giving to God. I’m sometimes stingy with my time instead of giving my all. You have reminded me to give MY all to the One who gave His all and settled my debt! Happy Easter, Cindy


    1. Oh Cindy, wow. It’s hard to contradict what our elders have done! Good for you in going back to leave a good tip. I have to evaluate if there are other areas in my life where I’m being stingy. Thank you for that reminder!


  5. Fantastic post! How many times have I not even thought of thanking God for His goodness to me every day? Your story about the tip was so good. I’m glad you were able to bless the waitress and gently correct your grandfather’s stingy act. Visiting from #52. God bless!


    1. Vicki, I have to remind myself to practice gratitude often, too. He truly is good to His children every.single. day. I’m glad my grandfather didn’t say much after I told him what I did. 🙂 I think it may have been, in part, that generation. Maybe they didn’t understand tipping? Thank you so much for visiting!


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