If you were in church last Sunday, you know I stepped on the “third rail” – coffee; particularly Starbucks. If I recall correctly, I said “I can’t stand Starbucks.” You can hear it for yourself at http://vimeo.com/100642331 (start listening at 8:40 in the sermon). As I said, I prefer Dunkin’ Donuts coffee. Tim Hortons. Even Cracker Barrel. Even (shudder) Waffle House.
But the thing is, I have a regular appointment on Wednesdays with O.R., who absolutely loves Starbucks! And I’ve been going there, week after week, drinking that (to me, undrinkable) stuff and holding out (until recently) that I didn’t really like it. How would my brother react now that “the cat was out of the bag”?
Last Wednesday, when I arrived at our appointment place, the first word out of his mouth was to offer a change of venue from Starbucks. I thought that was very kind, but I was a little embarrassed. I’d only mentioned my distaste for Starbucks to make a point. I could drink tea if I wanted to (except for the fact that isn’t it only Oprah, English-Types and women that drink hot tea?). Besides, we’ve been meeting there for months now; the employees know us and they also know that we’re “religious people” of some stripe. Who knows where that could lead? We decided to keep on meeting together at Starbucks.
And then – the unexpected happened. I took a big sip of my coffee, expecting to taste the same bitterness that I’d been contending with for years. And it was gone. It was smooth, mellow and bold, all at the same time. Could it be true? Could I actually be developing a taste for Starbucks? I didn’t know whether to be happy or sad.
Then I realized what had happened. I had changed the way I doctor my coffee. Just a little bit; but apparently just enough. The key, for me, was one more packet of Sweet’N Low. In a large cup, I now put three instead of two. Made all the difference in the world.
According to the apostle Paul, “. . . the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit . . . Therefore let us pursue the things which make for peace and the things by which one may edify another.” Romans 14:17,19.
So while I’m very happy in the knowledge that I now qualify to drink overpriced coffee, I’m pleased even more to have a brother who thinks enough of my comfort that he is willing to make a change.