The sweet aroma of a caramel latte is always enough to get me going, even on my least productive days. I’m a lover of coffee, but one thing I love more than coffee is the place where it’s brewed. Coffee shops have a way of drawing you in with their dim lighting, smell, and the quiet chatter of their inhabitants.
I was at a coffee shop a few weeks ago with a friend, talking about Jesus like we so often do, and it was here that I realized how similar Jesus and coffee shops are.
Through my Christian walk, I’ve found it true that it’s impossible to understand God in His entirety, but this last semester, He’s been showing me how to view Him as this cool Dad that I can go and get a cup of coffee with, and it’s an entirely new way of seeing Him for me. I think I got used to seeing God as this being that rules over us and has these unreachable expectations, but when I really think about it, He’s not like that at all. He’s our Father, our confidant, our encouragement— someone we want to hang out with.
Seeing God the way I do now is something I never thought possible before going to college. I’ve always seen God as this unreachable, supernatural force of nature. It took coming to college for Him to rip that mindset into shreds. In Malachi 3:10, it reads, “bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it.” When I first saw this, my special edition mind read this like it was God saying to me, “LOL BET,” and He’s spent a lot of time proving my initial thoughts about Him wrong ever since.
I never would’ve considered God to have this kind of demeanor, but that’s the part of Himself that He showed me throughout my first semester. God threw open the floodgates and poured out everything that I needed to be able to see how much He truly cares. He led the most beautiful, encouraging, Jesus-lovers into my life; something that I hadn’t really had before. God showed me parts of His character in these people. I don’t mean to take away from God’s infinite power and perfection, but I’ve come to realize that He can also be a baseball cap wearing, t-shirt loving, Dad joke generating, HUGGER, who is literally just trying to love us.
I think in a lot of ways, I felt like God was just trying to get something from me, but after He totally lol bet my life, I know that God’s just trying to love me. He wants to take me out for coffee, He wants me to get to know Him, and He wants to make me laugh. He wants to show me that He’s more than just the creator of the universe. God doesn’t want me to be intimidated by Him, but He wants me to love Him back. And I do. I do love Him back.
In my second semester of college, I know that He won’t hold back. I know He’ll be gentle, but in the same way, He’ll be a shot of espresso providing everlasting energy and love. I anticipate our coffee dates, the laughs we’ll have, and the time I’ll get to spend in His coffee shop presence. In the same way, I hope you’ll let Him take you out for a cup. It’s crazy what He’ll show you about Himself when you let Him.