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Hating Coffee & Preaching the Word

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Hating Coffee & Preaching the Word

Challies writes:

I hated coffee. I still do. I am convinced that it is a vile, evil concoction and one that has cruelly enslaved much of the human race. I despise the stuff, even in what I am assured is its finest form. I can barely stand even the smallest taste of it. It curdles my tongue, makes my eyes water, and leaves me gagging. I find it utterly revolting.

Tim Challies' experience with coffee is 100% opposite mine, I love the stuff, yet he was able to teach Starbucks employees and customers all about the coffee which was sold and even which coffees they should buy, far more effectively I'm sure than I could. Often he stated a coffee is "delicious" and went on to describe in glowing terms its flavor characteristics, yet his opinion and experience of it was opposite. Is it possible to be bloggers of the Word or preachers of the Word and not doers? Can those who do not love God teach those that doe how to love Him more? Can those who aren't humble, teach effectively on humility? Repentance?

This goes a step beyond James' description of the one who is a hearer only (James 1:22ff). Is it possible to hear so well as to be able to teach truth, and teach it accurately, while having that truth not affect your life? Absolutely, and we must avoid this at all cost. Tim Challies' illustration of his days as a barista at Starbucks is an excellent illustration of what we must fight not to be in our ministry of the Word:

And yet I was the coffee expert. When customers wanted to know about the different kinds of coffee we offered, it was my job to lead them through the various options available to them and to help them select the coffee that was suited to their tastes. A customer would choose a package from the counter and I would say, “Oh, now that’s a great choice. It’s a delicious, full-bodied roast that you can taste all over your tongue. Look for the flavors of oak and a subtle hint of the spring flowers that grow in the mountains of Peru.” I had the routine down pat and helped sell a lot of coffee—more than anyone else in the store, I’m sure.

Tim Challies
Living It and Writing It

Let us strive, dependent on God's grace, with all strength to be examples to be followed AND to teach the truth of a loving God who died in our place that enables and motivates our action.

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Title: Hating Coffee & Preaching the Word
Date posted: 22 9 '07 - 08:57
Category: Exposition and Exegesis, Miscellanies
Wordcount: 453 words
I Like It:: (vote) 26
I Hate it:: (vote) 19
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