One scoop of instant coffee. Half a scoop of fake sugar. 1/4 some Italian sweet creamer from the grocery store. Some boiling water from the kettle. All mixed together and poured messily into a turquoise to-go mug.
10 minutes later. I have successfully chugged the coffee in time to arrive at work feeling (and hopefully looking) preppy.
It lasts about 2 hours.
Then I crash.
And I kind of just want to hide from the world.
* * *
Okay, so I'm not sure if I'd say I love coffee (compared to my friends who are coffee connoisseurs, I know virtually nothing about coffee) or even that I'm addicted to caffeine (I can survive a day without it...I think). But as I was attributed my anti-social and irritable behavior on my coffee-deficient body, I slowly realized something. How often do I blame my grumpy and negative attitudes and actions on lack of caffeine?
I mean, type "coffee love" into Pinterest, and you find all sorts of cute pins made in the adoration of coffee.
(Isn't it fantastic that all of the pins are the same size? It made my self-diagnosed OCD very happy).
I mean, most people probably refer to their desire for coffee in jest. I mean, most people don't get out of bed thinking, "I get to drink coffee today! Life is worth living!" (Do they?) But notice how in these few pictures, coffee is also attributed to good moods/feelings, energy, and motivation. Therefore without coffee one could assume it is acceptable to be grumpy, irritable, lethargic, and unmotivated... or in general, unhappy.
I'm not saying it's wrong to drink caffeine. Or that everyone who drinks coffee idolizes it into some kind of magic potion. But I am saying that maybe - at least for myself - I'm looking to the wrong thing for my happiness, energy, and motivation.
(Yes, I know happiness isn't the same thing as joy... but bear with me). In Nehemiah 8:10, Nehemiah tells the people, "The joy of the Lord is your strength." 1 Thessalonians 5:12 tells us to, "Rejoice always." Psalm 118:24 says, "This is the day that the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it." One of the fruits of the spirit is joy. And I have struggled for several years with discontentment and therefore lack of joy.
Isaiah 40:28-31 says,
Have you not known?Philippians 4:13 says, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."
Have you not heard?
The everlasting God, the LORD,
The Creator of the ends of the earth,
Neither faints nor is weary.
His understanding is unsearchable.
He gives power to the weak,
And to those who have no might He increases strength.
And the young men shall utterly fall,
But those who wait on the LORD
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.
Galatians 6:9 encourages us, "And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart." Romans 5:3a-4 encourages us that "...tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope." 2 Thessalonians 3:13 says, "But as for you, brethren, do not grow weary in doing good."
* * *
Something that I've been learning recently is not to rely on myself. I've been trying so hard to change what's wrong in my life and in myself, but I've been relying on is a fallible, flawed, and messed up human being. It isn't enough to try to change myself. I have to surrender - give all to God, and allow Him to change me.
I need to find my joy, energy, and motivation in Him. I need to find my joy delighting in Him, find my strength in doing His will, and find my motivation from knowing that He will reward those who persevere.
When I'm grumpy because I'm discontent about my circumstances, I can't blame that on my lack of coffee. I have to find its true source, surrender it to God, and ask Him to change me.
When I'm feeling completely drained, I need to spend time with God reminding myself who He is and delighting in Him.
When I'm feeling unmotivated, I need to remind myself that life is short. God has work for me. There isn't much time and I need to spend my time here on earth being productive and doing His work.
Take a look at the quote below and think about it for a bit.
The first time I saw the above on one of my late-night Pinterest scrolling, I thought it was cute. But even though it was almost certainly written with the best and lightest of intentions, isn't it interesting how the word "and" is included? But wait - isn't Jesus ALL we need? There is no need for Jesus AND. We only need Jesus. Maybe the saying should be, "Less coffee, more Jesus."
God's Word and my relationship with Him is all I need to be renewed, reenergized, and filled with His joy.
I don't need coffee.
P.S. But I also promised honesty on this blog... and to be completely honest, I must tell you this. Today I came to work completely un-caffeinated today and lasted only a few hours before I headed off to buy a frappuccino. The irony and the hypocrisy. I really am sorry.
P.P.S. Like the new look? Check out the AM post for more info. :)