March 7, 2010

Coffee as a Sacrament

Each morning I can, just as the sun is setting out on its daily journey across the sky, I take to my cozy little chair with my old, worn Bible in one hand and and a hot cup of coffee in the other.  I drink in the sweetness of God's word as it pours into my eyes and flows down to my very soul, as the strong, milky coffee passes my lips and warms my body, while all along alerting my mind to the words I read.  And it occurs to me... my coffee is a sacrament.

Strange thought, coffee as a sacrament.  Isn't the label, "sacrament", reserved for those religious events and symbols that make their homes on altars and other such pious places?  Isn't my thought quite sacrilegious?  But no!  I remember that definition from Systematic Theology class, and my mind is at peace...

Sacrament \ˈsa-krə-mənt\ (n): an outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual work of God's grace

While His word is feeding my soul, this luscious cup I hold reminds me of His physical blessings, by default also reminding me of His spiritual blessings.  His provision of this cup reminds me that He has in mind all my needs and even my desires, and intends with determination to provide them, so long as they are for my good and for His glory.  This cup becomes an outward, visible sign of the inward, spiritual reality of God's faithful and perfect grace that He daily lavishes upon me.  

You might call this a silly example of what ought to be considered sacred.  But I dare you to consider what in your life serves as a sign of God's grace to you.  Rather, I would venture to ask, what doesn't?  George MacDonald, the wonderful, godly fairy-tale writer (and, I believe, perhaps from fairyland himself), once said, "The very outside of a book has a charm to me. It is a kind of sacrament - an outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace; as, indeed, what on God’s earth is not?"

Coffee as a sacrament... Strange thought, indeed.  But if coffee, in its reminder to me of God's grace, is not a sacrament, then I suppose nothing on earth is.  If it is a sacrament, then I suppose everything is.


  1. From one coffee lover to another ~ I love this.

  2. Thanks, Hillary! :) I'm convinced there will be coffee at the marriage feast of the Lamb. :)

  3. I'm put in mind of the Portuguese saying:

    Coffee should be
    as strong as death,
    as black as night,
    and as sweet as love.

    Very mystical really. A deep Sumatra dark roast is a mystical experience. And yes, I do think that many things are sacramental. In that our lives themselves are sacramental, infused with grace as we join in co-inheritance and co-suffering with Christ our Elder Brother.

    The cup we bless...

  4. That is definitely an intesting way of putting it.