Coffee and faith have much in common. Some people make a mad dash into coffee houses or faith houses while others prefer to linger in both. You will find all kinds of people in a coffee house. People that enjoy coffee include the young and the elderly, males and females, as well as people of all races and political persuasions. In the past it was often said that eleven a.m. on a Sunday morning was the most segregated hour in the United States. That seems to be changing for the better! Not everyone enjoys coffee or Jesus, but many do.
Imagining life as coffee explains a lot. When someone says they have been through the meat grinder it is considered a bad thing; at least at first. Sausage and hamburger could not be enjoyed by its millions of aficionado’s without first going through the grinder. Coffee must be ground and find itself in hot water to be much good. As uncomfortable as living in hot water, going through the grinder and being spit out can be, life should be richer and fuller because of the experience. Those who enjoy camp coffee, Turkish coffee and a French Press have learned not to stir the pot. It is too bad not everyone has learned that lesson in life.
Whether you prefer your coffee weak or strong, there is no denying you get out of it what you put in. The strength of faith is determined what you put into it, too. A mad dash into worship, an arrow prayer, a single line of Bible reading, or a sip of fellowship will never yield the full body and satisfaction of life steeped in plenty of faith each day.
People like their coffee in a variety of ways. Do you prefer coffee at 190 degrees or 205? Would like whip with that, milk or cream? What is your preferred sweetener; agave, honey, NutraSweet, Stevia, Splenda, sugar, or none? There are just as many varieties of faith and worship. The preferences range from Evangelical to Greek Orthodox, from Liturgical to Pentecostal, from Charismatic to Traditional.
At the core of all these worship and faith expressions is Jesus. At the core of Americano, Lattes, Cappuccino’s, Turkish, Pour Over, French Press, Siphon, and more is coffee. The end results may seem tremendously different, yet the essence remains constant.
Coffee houses and faith houses offer connection and community. In his book “The Great Good Place”, Ray Oldenburg writes, “Our neighbors crave a place of satisfaction and social cohesion — it’s something they need at the very deepest levels of their hearts and souls.” Augustine, years before said, “Lord, You’ve made us for Yourself, and our hearts find no rest till they find it in You.” Jesus provides the ultimate community and eternal connection.
Faith, like coffee is better shared. Who could share warm faith and hot coffee with today?