Around Christmas last year our organist gave me a coffee cup that says:
Fueled by Love
Sustained by Coffee
This has become my favorite coffee cup. I drink out of it every morning it is clean and some mornings it isn’t. Call me weird but I have a thing about drinkware. It gives me joy.
I’ve been trying to figure out why this message speaks to me every.single.morning. Jesus, love and coffee are three central values in my life. But I also think the verbs are especially poignant right now. So what is empowering, fueling and sustaining you in this moment?
Besides caffeine & Jesus, I keep thinking of the first year with our twins; there were moments I thought I wouldn’t survive. What got me through it was remembering that, eventually, there would be a break. Thirty minutes when my mom and Willie would take over, an out of the ordinary extended nap, never a full night’s rest, but some small moment for me to catch my breath. It was exhausting, but we made it through (still are making it through) and it taught me to trust in life’s rhythms.
But to get through exceptionally hard things, it helps to know what sustains you. For me it has been walks in the woods, creating a new routine, and giving myself permission to do less.
This Sunday I will preach on a story from Acts, where Peter heals a paralyzed man at a gate called Beautiful.
I read a commentary that says this miracle was really just the opening act for Peter’s speech in the temple. In it he says this:
Then that time will come when the Lord will give you fresh strength (Acts 3:20)
I think we all could use a bit of fresh strength these days. But the question is, where are you seeking it?
I think that it is tempting to think that because we can’t do many of the things that bring us joy, that there isn’t any joy to be had.
I’m not trying to blow sunshine up your &*% and tell you get out there and get happy, but I do want us to hear and know and believe that God will give us strength. But we have to determine what will empower us, fuel us, and sustain us until we can be together again.
Another way of asking this might be, what are the things that give your life meaning and purpose right now? Do those things. Cling to them tightly. They may not give you joy that is instantaneous but they might give you a deeper fuel that will sustain you.
As I said on Sunday, there is no one way to be faithful, but I pray that even when the world as we know it has completely changed, we will keep searching for the source of our strength that will sustain us.