"What does an ice cream sundae cost?" he asked the waitress.
"Fifty cents," she answered.
The youngster reached deep in his pockets and pulled out an assortment of change, counting it carefully as the waitress grew impatient. She had "bigger" customers to wait on.
"Well, how much would just plain ice cream be?" the boy asked.
The waitress responded with noticeable irritation in her voice. "Thirty-five cents."
Again, the boy slowly counted his money. "May I have some plain ice cream in a dish then, please?" He gave the waitress the correct amount, and she brought him the ice cream.
Later, the waitress returned to clear the boy's dish and when she picked it up, she felt a lump in her throat. There on the counter the boy had left two nickels and five pennies. She realized that he had had enough money for the sundae, but sacrificed it so that he could leave her a tip.
Before passing judgment, first treat others with courtesy, dignity and respect.
Reprinted from Grace Drops, Volume II (2004).