I have a confession to make.
On Monday, while I was out grocery shopping, I stopped at Starbucks for my all time favorite drink – a Carmel frappuccino. As I drove from one store to another, sipping on my cool treat, I passed by the mall and it made me remember to back when I was a teen.
Back then some of my friends were big into coffee and coffee drinks. Neither of my parents drank coffee and so I had no interest in it. But when we would go to the mall or hang out it was the cool thing to stop and get coffee or some sort of beverage containing coffee. It didn’t take long before I was caught up in the cool habit of social drinking – with coffee. I actually acquired the taste for it over a period of time as I tried various flavors. However, if it hadn’t been for those friends of mine (smile) I wouldn’t have ever tried it or desired it.
So…this made me think.
What was the difference in my drinking coffee rather than out drinking beer or other alcohol beverages? Before you get all hot under the collar I want you to know that I am NOT saying that drinking alcohol is right. I am NOT saying that drinking coffee and all related beverages is wrong. I am saying “why do we do what we do?”
You see, my parents didn’t mind if I was out “being cool” by drinking coffee and cappuccinos, but oh, they would not have been happy (to say the least) if I had been out “being cool” by drinking alcohol. Why? My motive would have been the same in either scenario. But the focus was on the behavior (drink), not on the heart (motive).
I do know, and believe, that there is a difference between drinking coffee and alcohol. The Bible gives clear and straightforward commands on drinking alcohol. But you know…hold on!…I believe God gives us clear commands on drinking coffee and any other drinks for that matter, too.
1 Corinthians 6:20 says “For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body“. Too much coffee – too much of anything! – is not glorifying God with my/your body.
Romans 12:2 tells us “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.” While there was nothing inherently wrong with drinking coffee, doing it to fit in was wrong. My heart motive was to be conformed…not transformed.
So back to my splurge on Monday. I have to confess that there was just a little bit of me that felt “cool” while sipping away on my creamy, Carmel treat. There are times, like on a date night or at 6am in the morning while on my way to a ladies’ conference that I can honestly say it has nothing to do with being cool. Then it’s simply a treat or a small boost when I’ve only had 5 hours of sleep. But even good things…yes, every good thing…can have a bad side.
When my desire for a frappuccino causes my husband to drive 6+ miles (which costs over a dollar in gas!) out of the way just to get me a drink when we are trying to conserve on gas and family expenses…it’s wrong for me to be drinking it that time. The next time may be when Justin and I are on a date and rather than spend $20 on a meal we decide to only spend $8 on a special treat while we sit and have a heart to heart talk. Then it’s okay for me to drink it!
It all comes back and down to the motive…the heart of the matter.
It’s all about moderation. It’s all about balance. It’s all about not offending others. (ouch!) It’s all about GOD being glorified. Yes, even in the way and why we drink our coffee.
“All the ways of a man are clean in his own sight, but the Lord weighs the motives.” – Proverbs 16:2
“Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God; give no offense either to the Jews or to Greeks or to the church of God.” – 1 Corinthians 10:31-32
Is God being glorified in your life?
Hmmm…I think I better get up and get to work now before my computer time is out of balance.