My mom loved coffee. I remember watching her open a new can, smell it, and then eat a spoonful of the grounds. If she were alive today, she would love Starbucks. Coffee beans, by themselves, have an aroma; but the true flavor of the coffee only comes out when the beans are ground. Grinding the beans doesn’t produce the flavor; it merely releases what’s already inside the bean.
We are very similar. Have you or I ever been in a situation where something happened, and our response was less than loving? Just as surely as grinding coffee beans bring out what’s already inside of them, uncomfortable situations release what’s already inside of us. If we respond negatively, it’s because that attitude already exists in our hearts. Others don’t cause our bad responses; trying circumstances just trigger their release. Maybe we’re just having an inner conflict over who we really are. If we solve the inner turmoil, the outer behavior may change.
We alone control our responses; it’s no one else’s fault when we react wrongly. Maybe it’s time to take responsibility for our actions, own them, and do something positive about them. May what happens in life release our inner joy as we express the aroma of hope and trust in God.
Help me, Lord, to focus as much on what’s coming out of me as what’s going in.
Lord Jesus, You have said, “Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks” (Matthew 12:34 NKJV). Create in me a pure heart.