Doesn't that picture look amazing? I mean it actually makes my hands feel warmer just looking at that picture. And, I think the blood vessels in my brain have dilated a little bit.
I didn't even make it three days into lent without forgetting that I'd given up coffee. When I realized, three sips in to a delicious cup of black coffee, what I was doing, I literally flung my hand over the top of the coffee mug to stop the aroma from continuing to waft towards me.
A few days later, when a headache began to set in, the first thought that came to mind was that it would just be so much easier to make a cup of coffee.
So I asked myself,
"Easier than what? Easier than suffering? Get a grip, Lindsay-Liu," I mentally slapped the side of my head. "You are totally missing the point."
It's not EASIER to make a cup of coffee. It's just a bad habit I've fallen into. Instead of seeking the Lord's strength and healing when a headache sets in, I go for the coffee and coconut creamer first.
In Guatemala, one of the doctors we work with at Medical Missions Ministry is Hector. On my second trip there, he reminded me over and over again how we often won't even think about praying to God for strength and healing when we have a headache - we just reach for the Tylenol bottle (or in my case, the coffee cup).
Is it because we have more faith in the Tylenol/coffee than our God, or is it a bad habit of turning to the wrong thing first?
Yesterday I'm on the phone with a co-worker. I obviously sounded tired on the phone because she noticed that I wasn't quite as perky as I usually am.
I tell her it's my "coffee hour," but I am "off coffee" until Easter. She commends my decision, but reminds me that since coffee is my worst vice, I really shouldn't be so hard on myself.
I agree. Coffee probably is my worse vice. But, I sensitively continue, it shouldn't be the answer to my problems. I should be looking to Someone else instead.
Mentally, I think about coffee mugs like these...
And, I think to myself, I need one that says, "All I Need is a whole lot of Jesus."
Because that's the truth. It really doesn't matter how much coffee I drink. If there's no Jesus, coffee isn't gonna do me any good. So, why don't I just turn to Jesus first?
Today, I read this post by Diana Stone on SheReadsTruth, and it just nailed it home for me.
"Often, we get so wrapped up in the 'giving up' process that we forget what is supposed to take its place during these 40 days... Observing lent is not just about abstaining from coffee or sweets, it's the symbol of turning away from those distractions to focus on our Lord."
See... Nailed it.
It's not about giving up coffee. It's not about suffering. It's about where I turn. And, it's time to return to Jesus.