The Rest of Us

I went to Starbucks today. The reason? One free drink with my name on it and 20 minutes of an armchair with my behind’s name on it. Let me back up.

I went to Starbucks last week. I ordered a tall decaf. Brewed. You know: drip, drip, drip. That kind of coffee. As in: coffee. With a smile, the cheery barista told me it’d be a few minutes since they were just now brewing a fresh pot of decaf drip. “No problem”, I thought and said, my appointment was late to arrive anyway. I had time.
So, while the fresh decaf was dripping, I sat on the leather couch. Devoid of any reading material of my own, and despising the newspaper that Starbucks carries, I simply sat.

And sat.

And sat.

And sat.

I thought to myself, “Hmm…I sure do want some decaf.” But I’m a patient person. Ask my wife.

So, finally, with politeness in my step and a smile on my face, I mustered the gumption to investigate what was going on with the MIA decaf. Just as I approached the countoured partition separating me from the wonderment of the barista’s realm, the same cheery gal who took my order walked around the counter, decaf in hand, and toward me with a smile. As she did, she reached over the frosted glass and grabbed some type of slip of paper. Apologetically, she told me that she had simply forgotten about me and was so sorry to make me wait. Then she handed me the slip of paper. With verbage and verbosity that rivals even yours truly, I had received a heartfelt note from Mr. Starbucks himself, apologizing (in form letter) for my inconvenience and stating that my next cup was on him. Or them. Or it. Or however you choose to identify the juggernaut of Starbucks. You get the point.

So, back to today.

I had approx. 20 minutes to enjoy my free drink. And here’s a tip: When Starbucks gives you a piece of paper that entitles you to a free drink, get the biggest, most expensive drink they offer. And I did just that. So, it ended up that I paid $1.53 for a tall decaf and got my decaf (eventually) PLUS a Venti Java Chip Frappucino for $4.85. Take that, Starbucks. Vengenance was theirs however; most of the chips didn’t fit easily through the straw. I had to suck hard enough to turn my face inside out to get it through. “Who’s laughing now?”, Starbucks says with a grin.

So, I got my drink, had a book in hand I have long wanted to at least start. And within moments of ordering and receiving my free slice of paradise, someone I know walked in behind me. And not just someone, but someone who needs attention…..MY attention. Someone whom I care deeply about, but don’t have any more answers for. Someone who consumed >15 of my 20 minutes. So, with 4 minutes and a handful of seconds, I got as much reading of that book in as I could. I’m on page 2 of chapter 1.

But you know what? Even that 4+ minutes was refreshing. Even such a brief retreat was a retreat nonetheless. Even with barely no time at all, I stood up, walked out, and found my step a bit peppier. Why? I’ll tell you my guess.

When we rest–even briefly–we touch the Divine. And in case you don’t know me or know what my backdrop is, when I say “Divine”, I mean “God”. And when I say “God”, I mean the God of the Bible. The YAHWEH of the Old Testament and the MESSIAH of the New Testament. When we rest, we reflect the nature and person of God.

God is never hurried.
God is never overscheduled.
God is never overcommitted.
God is never strained, stressed, or strapped for time.
God is never rushed.
God is never late.
God is never early.
God is never even slightly winded by the things that exhaust me.

And when we rest, we come in contact with His character, the very being of our Creator.

So, with my total of 4 minutes of quiet rest and retreat, though I wished for more, I was able to walk out and back to my day reminded that the rest of my day was His.

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