March 25, 2020
Coffee has taken North America by storm over the past number of years. From the growth of Starbucks into the colossal beast that people are way too excited about, to the meteoric rise of micro roasters and classy little coffee joints like the newly minted Sparrow Coffee here in Saskatoon it’s been a wild ride.
But what do I love about coffee most? Hands down, it’s the people.
They get weirdly into their craft, they pour themselves into their work (#dadpun ftw), and their passion rubs off on people.
I know it has for me.
A few years ago, I couldn’t have cared less about coffee. I drove a semi-truck and drank some of the worst truck stop coffee from Vancouver to Minneapolis and everything in between. The kind that, in the immortal words of Louis L’Amour, was “blacker than sin and strong enough to float a horseshoe.”
But then I met Daryl and then Alisha and they inspired me that I’m worth more than Folgers.
It turns out there IS something better when waking up than Folgers in my cup.
But what’s the point of all this? Passionate people have a way of inspiring others.
Oddly enough, it’s not usually what they set out to do.
If you ask someone who’s passionate about something why they got into it, you’d be unlikely to receive an answer including their desire to persuade people’s opinions about it.
Often, you’ll hear about the people who grow the coffee in the some of the best growing regions in the world. You’ll hear about the fascination with astronomy that started from their first look at the moon through their childhood telescope. You’ll hear the story of their first time they lost themselves in a song. The list goes on.
The point is, passionate people capture other’s attention because we are stirred by their love of something.
It points to something bigger than us. To a world teeming with wonder and purpose beyond our meager day-to-day existence.
When I think of these people, I can’t help but think of Paul from the New Testament.
He was a man that was passionate about the Gospel of Jesus and through that passionate he helped build the Church of Christ that carries on to this day.
His love for Christ was rooted in his first experience with Jesus.
In the book of Acts, we read that while Paul was still “breathing out murderous threats against the Lord’s disciples” that something amazing happened. Jesus showed up and revealed himself to Paul. (Read the account in Acts 9)
In this story we see that Paul, convinced of who Jesus was, completely changed his life and became so passionate about Jesus and the Gospel that he willingly gave everything up to devote himself to Jesus.
I want to suggest something… I don’t think that Paul’s work for the Kingdom of God was successful because he was an amazing communicator, or because he had anything particularly special about him.
I think that Paul’s ministry was history-shapingly amazing (“shapingly’s” not a word, I know) because he was passionate about the subject matter: aka Jesus.
He was so convinced of who Jesus was and so immersed in the reality of the Gospel that it shaped everything in his life. Sure, he tried to convince people about Jesus but that desire to persuade people came first from a passion for the person of Jesus.
So, let me ask you. What are you passionate about?
What gets you so excited that you can’t help but join subreddits about it, watch YouTube videos about it, read articles about it, and get lost thinking about it?
Pursue that thing. But also, pursue Christ. As amazing as coffee is (and trust me, my isolation is being fueled by caffeine), it pales in comparison to the life-giving truth of Jesus.
Oh, and when this thing is over and we can meet again, coffee is on me. I promise.