I had a recent conversation with a friend of mine that somehow ended up on the topic of shadow boxes. One of the items he talked about in his shadow box was that of a miniature coffee grinder. He then went on to describe how that coffee grinder represented marriage and more specifically, how the beans that went into the grinder were representative of the different personalities involved in marriage and how God sort of blends them together.
It was a great image...except if I had a shadow box, there would be no coffee grinder.
Because I don't drink coffee anymore.
You see, I used to love coffee. In fact, at my first job, on the first day I discovered it, I drank eight cups in about four hours. (That was a mistake.)
As the years went on, I continued to drink it on a regular basis. I would drink it at home or stop by a Caribou Coffee or a Starbucks to grab the coffee of the day when I was on the run. Good stuff, especially the darker roasts.
But when I started to work on a particular novel manuscript of mine a few years ago, I soon realized it was a project unlike any other. After a few drafts/edits, I began to run into numerous problems just trying to focus/concentrate on the editing process. Eventually, things slowed to a crawl. This dragged on for weeks until I finally lifted the issue up in prayer. I asked God, "What's interfering with my writing?"
I'd like to say I heard or sensed a reply, but none came. So I asked again the next day. About an hour later, as I was in my kitchen and grabbing the handle on the coffee pot, it more or less came to me: it was the coffee.
So I turned the coffee pot off and stopped drinking it for the rest of the day. Keep in mind that I already downed probably a pot of coffee at work earlier in the day, and I put another pot on when I arrived home. Looking back, I had no doubts I was on my way to downing two pots that day.
What I didn't realize is that I would only drink 4-5 more cups of coffee after that. What I also didn't notice until later was that a few days before I prayed that, the coffee at worked began to taste downright nasty. Sure, with free coffee in the breakroom you get a variety of people making it, who dump different amounts of grounds in the filter, etc. But no, this was definitely tasting just strange.
So the following day I went to the downstairs cafeteria and ordered a Starbucks coffee. I knew this would be the end of the disgusting breakroom coffee.
I brought it upstairs and drank maybe half of it. Good grief, I realized...I was losing my taste for this, too. I only had a few more cups after that and well...the last cup made me physically ill.
And you can guess what happened next...suddenly it got much easier to edit and work on my project.
Now here's the catch: a year earlier I tried stopping my coffee drinking on my own. That lasted two weeks and I failed miserably. Hmmm...there seems to be some kind of Biblical pattern developing here...
Is God still in the deliverance business? Definitely.