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Sorry Coffee. It’s not you, it’s me.

Posted in Faith, Goal-setting, and Self-care

Last week, I said so long to coffee. My breakup with my wake-up beverage has been in the works for a while. If you have a habit, craving or obsession you’re rethinking, you know what I mean.

In the health ranking for food and beverages some categories are obvious.

Kale anytime is good.

Having cookies all of the time is bad.

In my mind, coffee fell in the neutral category. There are constant debates over its benefits and its potential for damage. So wherever you stand on the pro-coffee spectrum, continue to take your stand. I’m not trying to persuade you.

But if something in your routine is starting to make you uncomfortable, don’t ignore the nudge.

My need to have coffee as a morning soother, afternoon reward and evening wrap-up was out of control.  I tracked my caffeine inventory constantly. I dreaded running out of my vanilla latte blend. There was nothing neutral about my behavior.

coffee comfort quote2In our info-driven, me-first society your “coffee” could be something else.

Instead of something you sip, it could be somewhere you go, something you do or the kind of conversations you have.

Without restraint.

Without a thought.

Without accountability.

If I’m compelled to do something more than I’m compelled to seek Christ, I have to wonder what’s really brewing.

This is not an anti-coffee campaign. It can be a tasty little beverage. But something about coffee had too much of a hold on me. I begin to recognize:

The warmth of what comforts us can become the substance that controls us.

Last December, I received a mug at a gift exchange. It read “But first coffee.” I loved its color, design and of course, its sentiment (pictured above). But eventually, my beautiful mug had a convicting message.

It reminded me of another, more important “first.”

Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.” – Matthew 6:33 NLT

As I desire to put everything in its proper place, God is faithful to show me the next thing that is out of place.

It was clear coffee was my next thing. Restlessness was my signal. The alarm sounded during a recent trip to the grocery store. As I battled cravings, I saw a basket of my favorite blend on sale. The price was the lowest I’d seen; but the trap was more obvious.

For me, the words “but first…” express a hindrance or delay. But when I said, “God first” deliverance came.

coffee quote 5Is there something you need to say so long to?  We can be slow to give up what makes us feel good. My coffee sacrifice was weeks in the making.

However, in a world where we’re constantly offered comfort and convenience, there is still only one Comforter (see John 14:15-17).

Seeking God first, means everything else is second. Yet, seemingly harmless things — even good things — can easily become a contender for first place.

Nine days later, I’m learning a lot on my coffeeless journey. I’m reminded my mojo is never found in a cup of joe or in anything else. It is in the God who created and redeemed me.

If you are sensing the need to let something go, here’s some good news: It’s better to let it go than to let go of what God has for you. In Christ we have peace, power and a love like we’ve never known.

As He reveals what’s out of place in our lives, I’m praying we’ll respond, “God first.” It’s the only way to discover true hope for the heart and joy to the soul.

“We are allowed to do anything, but not everything is good for us to do. We are allowed to do anything, but not all things help us grow strong as Christians.” – 1Corinthians 10:23 NLT


  1. Aunt Corenza
    Aunt Corenza

    Amen Joy!!! Wonderful thoughts as always. I completely understand, and in agreement, especially in regards to that morning cup of coffee. lol

    May 10, 2016
    • Joy

      Thanks Aunt Corenza! I’m so glad someone else understands my coffee dilemma. 🙂

      May 10, 2016
  2. denisemroberts

    Hi Joy – so while I may not join you in ditching my coffee 🙂 your thoughts resonate. I am in the throes of ditching something for the very reasons you list above. Stopping in from Intentional Tuesday Link Up

    May 10, 2016
    • Joy

      Hi Denise! Thanks for stopping by. I wish you well on your “other” ditching efforts. Enjoy your coffee!

      May 10, 2016
  3. CHILL

    Ohhhhhhhh… why, oh, why must you write such soul-stirring and heart-gripping confessions that make me analyze, face, and acknowledge the “coffee” (bka “Sweet Treats”) in my own life? … More so, why, oh, why did I choose to read this today?! LOL! —- Seriously, Joy… this is good medicine. It doesn’t taste good going in and down, but healing is sure to come if we stomach it and let it do its work.

    May 10, 2016
    • Joy

      Oh Chill – I feel your pain! Praying the medicine reaches it’s target and helps us both!

      May 10, 2016
  4. Yup! Waving my hand for help as I crave a soda while realizing that my “craving for comfort” can only be fulfilled in God.

    May 10, 2016
    • Joy

      Thanks for the hand wave Amy! It’s good to know I’m not alone. Even more so, it’s great to know the true Comforter. 🙂

      May 10, 2016
  5. Crystal Dawn Murphy
    Crystal Dawn Murphy

    I have a cube magnet that says, “I can do all things through prayer and coffee”. I have it up there because I thought it was cute but your blog is making me rethink.

    Joy…this is an outstanding piece, a tremendous reminder of what really is first. This resonates with me as I too, have things I need to push away. Thanks for this powerful reminder to seek God first in everything.

    May 19, 2016
    • Joy

      Wow Crystal – just a couple of weeks ago I would have celebrated your magnet! Thankfully, God’s leading and grace prevails. I’m glad this post encouraged you with a “God first” message. Praying you’ll follow where He leads.

      May 19, 2016

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