Monday, December 04, 2006

COFFEE



This was sent to me and is too good not to share with you all!

A group of alumni, highly established in their careers, got together to visit their old university professor. Conversation soon turned into complaints about stress in work and life. Offering his guests coffee, the professor went to the kitchen and returned with a large pot of coffee and an assortment of cups: porcelain, plastic, glass, crystal, some plain looking, some expensive, some exquisite - telling them to help themselves to the coffee. When all the students had a cup of coffee in hand, the professor said:

"If you noticed, all the nice looking expensive cups were taken up, leaving behind the plain and cheap ones. While it is normal for you to want only the best for yourselves, that is the source of your problems and stress.

Be assured that the cup itself adds no quality to the coffee. In most cases it is just more expensive and in some cases even hides what we drink. What all of you really wanted was coffee, not the cup, but you consciously went for the best cups... And then you began eyeing each other's cups.

Now consider this: Life is the coffee; the jobs, money and position in society are the cups. They are just tools to hold and contain Life, and the type of cup we have does not define, nor change the quality of Life we live.

Sometimes, by concentrating only on the cup, we fail to enjoy the coffee God has provided us." God brews the coffee, not the cups..... Enjoy your coffee! "The happiest people don't have the best of everything. They just make the best of everything."

Live simply.
Love generously.
Care deeply.
Speak kindly.
Leave the rest to God.
You are the miracle, my friend,
Your life either shines a light - or casts a shadow.
Thoughts?

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

I've got a beautiful cup, but the coffee tastes like crap.

SoulPastor said...

I find that interesting.

Since you are anonymous, do you care to enlighten?

Anonymous said...

Maybe it's all in what you do with the coffee.
Some don't mind it as is.
Others find a little milk and sugar help.
Then there's the Irish...

anonymous 1 said...

In response to soulpastor.

My cup is beautiful - I have everything I need: stuff, family, church, etc.
My coffee tastes like crap - Life sucks right now anyways. What should be "life"; inner joy, peace, etc, is completely eluding me. I know that Christians are supposed to have inner peace and all that, but I just have an empty hole.

Anonymous said...

Since I don't really know you I am just going to throw some stuff out there.

Being a Christian isn't enough. It takes some work. Titles don't mean much
unless they are put to use.
Is there time spent learning about God through his word?
Is there time spent knowing and conversing with God through prayer?
Is there time spent in praise and worship?
Etc.

Things like this help with our perspective of life. When we put time and effort into
our relationship with God things seem different.

Of course this isn't a blanket answer because we all go through the crap.
Can't get a good cup of coffee all the time.
But how we endure and respond to the crap can make us better and stronger in our faith and relationship with God.
Mind you that's easier said than done sometimes.

Stephanie said...

Although this post was very inspiring, encouraging us to live life abundantly and look at things positively, I must admit it lacked "oomph" for me too. Anonymous 1, I don't know what's sucking the joy from your life right now, but honestly, I can relate to the "the coffee tastes like crap" thing too. Not only that, although it is true that just saying we are Christians isn't enough and it is true that "if you put time and effort into our relationship with God things seem different", sometimes our formulas don't seem very effective in making our coffee sweeter. One thing, Anonymous 1 that I pray for you (and for me) is that we don't lose hope. Just because the coffee's crappy right now doesn't mean it will be forever. That's the difference between those who know the Lord and those who don't. We have hope for a better life, and we have our Father who cares about us so much that He will never leave us nor forsake us, even when we can't see the point of going on. When all the "rules" of Christianity don't work, when the outlook looks bleak, when we have no one else; He is still here, and we can still hope. Sometimes when we're in the middle of "crap", it feels like it has been going on forever, and that it will continue forever... but that's just not true. Think back... have you always felt like this? If not, ask God to help you remember those better times. They can help bring hope. Have you had hard times before, and God came through? Ask God to bring those times to your memory. You can hold onto them through this time, and He can bring you hope through your past victories. This isn't forever.

Anonymous said...

Well here is a thought...

Maybe your coffee tastes like crap because the beans in your life (the stuff that makes you... you) have not be roasted long enough.
How often we look at life like we are suppose to be happy all the time...or that the world owes me something. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Throw yourself into the fire where you can give...hurt with people who hurt...and then give again...

You will find life returning...

Give and it will be given to you... (how who was it that said that?)

Anonymous 1 said...

Thank you Stephanie. God must have sent you today. Yes, God has come through before. After reading what you said, I thought of 8 years ago when something devastating happened. From that, I became clinically depressed and suicidal. Then, one night I opened my Bible (which was collecting dust) and it opened to 2 corinthians 4:8, We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed, perplexed, but not in despair, persecuted but not abandoned, struck down, but not destroyed. That verse gave me hope, and turned things around. I think that today was God too. Yes, this is not forever, and I can have hope. I checked your blog, I've seen it before, but the poem you did made me cry. But it was good tears. for a change.

Stephanie said...

anonymous 1,

Well, you're not the only one crying today - also good tears for a change. I'm glad that God used my post to speak to you. I just read it over... it was good, wasn't it?!? I guess if God can speak through a donkey, He can speak through me...

I need to look back at past victories too... I've been pretty stuck in a rut these days myself. And thanks for reminding me of 2 Corinthians 4:8&9; it has been a passage that I've clung to during hard times as well.

Anonymous said...

What's with calling Country music the devil's music?? (in your profile) That's my fave.

How are you guys doing anyway? Just found you in a roundabout way via other blogs... Say hi to Sharon :)

Sarah (MacKay) Froese...

Anonymous said...

Last year at this time I a lovely looking cup but the coffee inside was becoming stale and bitter. This summer my cup was shattered and the coffee spilled. It was terrifying at first, being cupless... now I'm borrowing a seemingly ugly cup but it's the best coffee I've had in a very, very long time. With God's continuing help I'm sure I will again have a decent cup to myself someday. But I must say I'm more of a tea drinker...

Anonymous said...

hmmm, yes, I resound with a few of the comments here. Coffee...having been a coffee shop manager and worked with a pretty good independant coffee roaster, I know the importance of the right blend of beans, the importance of temperature and care. Care of the coffee...the end result...not the cup. The cup...is the vessel and the coffee...the soul, sweet, aromatic, sometimes bitter. Sometimes we add syrup to sweeten the coffee or milk to make it smooth and frothy. Yet a good espresso is in and of itself amazing.
So we know that the process of finding the right beans and discarding the rest is important.
Roasting and care of the beans is important.
Taste test to see if it meets the mark, and if not...you try again.
We have the perfect coffee roaster. Who sifts through the rotten beans, and finds the best. Sometimes that is painful. Then you get roasted...with a tenderness that is quite impressive. All the while, the perfect roaster is waiting for the end result.
Hmmm, I love coffee. I also like a good cup to put it in, and I have some favorites. Yet, I love the Perfect Roaster, who take care of the beans, roasting and end results...bringing perfection.

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Anonymous said...

That's somewhat true, except that there are some of us who enjoy the packaging as much as the contents. How about those who enjoy a new Mercedes over an old Pinto altho they're both "just transportation"...

Anonymous said...

Hey Gerry, sorry about the multiple posts, please delete some. My computer went crazy yesterday.

For me, nothing is important on the exterior,sure, we want to look good, impress others, have nice stuff, but in the end it is just that. We get caught up in the packaging and it gets us in trouble, look at Porn...plastic surgery, the clothing industry...the list is extensive. We have to appear a certain way, look a certain way or we will at some point be rejected.
That is my view. I am not saying everyone has to have the same view as me, but I do get tired of the packaging. I would rather see the coffee (soul of another).
Having been at one point consumed with the packaging of myself and of others, I am being taught the fragility of that...and what is really important in life. In the end I cannot take the Mercedes with me, I will be taking the coffee and the roaster will take a sip and my prayer is that he says "well done."

Anonymous said...

It may be good coffee, but if you pour it into a used, chipped, dirty cup, nobody will drink it and it ends up wasted.....

ck said...

Is your coffee bitter (i.e. crappy)?

Double check to see if the beans are coming from God... Jeremiah 2:13 "My people have committed two sins: They have forsaken me, the spring of living water, and have dug their own cisterns, broken cisterns that cannot hold water."

Note that the sin is abandoning God as the source of life! Think about this: does it honor God for us to say, "Yes God, you are God and you love me! Therefore I am going to work for you and be your servant because your desire for me is so strong." or does it honor God to say, "Yes God, you are God and you love me! Therefore I am going to trust in you and be your servant because I have nothing except for you."

It honors God when we go to him for satisfaction, for fulfilment, for everything! Why? Because it exalts him as the only true source of life - the fountain of living [coffee].

Are you happy? Is your coffee flavourful and satisfying? Jesus said, "Come to me all who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest." To go to anything else in life (like the world's coffee or your cup) will leave you with ultimate bitterness, but going to Jesus will secure an endless supply of freshly brewed, first-rate, premium hand-picked and brewed coffee that truly satisfies.

And to respond to the previous post... you're right that good coffee will not be enjoyed from a filthy cup. Our hope is that God's coffee cleans our cup, and restores (in His time) the chips and breaks in the cup that prevent it from being a joy to whoever drinks it. This is the journey of sanctification, and may the Lord grant his mercies to all of us as we groan for our cups to be repaired, cleaned, and glorified!

patti said...

I like how the analogy has been expanded. It's good to be reminded in another way that God uses tough times to make us 'taste' better. I also appreciate the reminder of the verses in 2 Cor.