coffeeOk…so I’m pretty serious about my coffee.  I’m not a crazed fanatic, but I like my coffee, and anybody who knows me, knows I like Starbucks.  Now say what you will about fads, the bandwagon or looking cool—I’m not having it.  The reality is, once you get used to freshly ground, freshly brewed dark roast coffee, the McDonalds, convenience store or mom & pop cafe coffees just don’t cut it (I’m not being a coffee snob, just stating the truth).  I drink coffee that is not of Starbucks quality and freshness without complaining, but when I want a good cup of coffee I either stop by a Starbucks (or other coffee purveyor I trust) or I grind the beans and brew or press my own.  Once you’ve gone Sumatran, there’s no going back.

So this morning, I stopped off at the local SB for my usual grande dark roast with non-fat milk and oatmeal with everything.  I saw them coming across the parking lot and knew what this might mean, but didn’t want to be obvious in trying to beat them to the bar.  They were very much involved in their exchange, discussing something that I’m sure was earth shattering punctuated with little bouts of laughter and giggles.  Entering the front door of the establishment, they walked up to the bar and the barista asked what she could get started for them.  The two ladies continued their little banter with laughter and arm bumps that signal a knowing remark that was obviously important to the story.  All the while, they were oblivious to the service provider waiting patiently at the bar for their order and the “patient” regular behind them who was ready to get his coffee.  Finally, the two “interrupted” their conversation to take note of the barista’s request and, just as expected, they didn’t even know how to order.  After several minutes of trying to explain what they wanted and then having the barista clarify it for them, they interrupted their conversation again to pay for their brews and step out of the way.  Thankfully, by this time another of the baristas had noticed me and had my usual order waiting at the bar when I stepped up.  I thanked them, engage in brief small talk and retired to the patio to enjoy my morning fare.

Now being the very spiritual person I am (yeah right!), I am sitting here trying to see what God wants to teach me from this little experience.  I can initially think of at least two things.

1.  Being oblivious is a spiritual problem.  I’m not saying that these two ladies in their social oblivion had a spiritual problem.  What I mean is we get so wrapped up in “our world” that we live in oblivion when it comes to the spiritual world.  If I am so engaged in myself and my wants and my plans that I don’t consider where God is in all this, I am living in spiritual oblivion.  Proverbs 3:5-6 says that if I want God to guide me, I have to acknowledge Him.  I can’t live in oblivion to His will, His words or His ways.  Lord, help me to be sensitive to your Spirit and listen to your voice like a sheep listens to the voice of his shepherd (John 10:27).

2.  It is not about me.  This is very closely related to the previous point.  However, it is realizing this that will help me to practice point number one.  As I stood there waiting my turn to order, my world was at that moment revolving around me.  It was all about me and my coffee and my needs and my fulfillment.  We so often go to the Bible with that perspective.  We, like looking in our high school yearbook, search the pages looking for ourselves.  We think that it is a “me book.” In reality, it is not a “me book,” it is a “HE book.” It is all about God and His plans and His purposes and His truth (Isaiah 55).  I’m just privileged and blessed to be a recipient of God’s grace as He is working out His plan.  The Bible is a revelation of His story and His heart and His plans.  I just get to be a part of what He is doing.  Reminding myself of that makes it possible for me to be more sensitive to His Spirit and more patient in following His plans for me.

So the next time I am standing in line and someone in front of me is oblivious to the proper coffee house etiquette, I will remind myself that it is not about me, it is about God.  I will listen to His voice telling me to relax and experience His presence amidst the coffee grinders and espresso machines at Starbucks.

What has God been trying to teach you in the mundane process of life?

To check out other blogs posts in the One Word Blog Carnival on the subject of “Patience” check out Bridget Chumbley’s site.


6 Responses to “Oblivious”

  1. February 9, 2010 at 3:30 pm

    These are great thoughts… amazing what we can learn from a frustrating trip to our local SB for our ‘fix’.

    Thanks for sharing this experience that all of us have encountered in one way or another… and can certainly relate to!

  2. February 9, 2010 at 6:08 pm

    A similar thing happened to me at Starbuck’s — and a similar result. I learned that (1) yes, some people are oblivious and consequently rude, and (2) yes, that’s what we must be like to God at times. A lot of times.

    Good post.

  3. February 9, 2010 at 10:52 pm

    So, I can relate to this. Especially if I haven’t had my coffee yet!

    For me, when I find myself judging and criticizing, I repeat: Bless them. Strengthen me.

    And then, I don’t have to look for the lesson. The lesson is right here within me. Bless them. Strengthen me.

    Great post. Thanks!

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