Coffee-like Love
“I give you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, so you also must love each other. This is how everyone will know that you are my disciples, when you love each other.”
—John 13:34–35 (CEB)
PHIWA LANGENI | There’re so many steps involved in getting a nice-tasting cup of coffee into a mug. Starting from the type of plant and the ground where it’s planted to how carefully it’s picked and how it gets roasted and stored and shipped to your favorite coffee location, each step is important in how tasty and effective the coffee will be.
The coffee beans that made up the best cup of coffee you’ve ever experienced probably went through an extremely delicate and intricate and sometimes difficult process of going from plant to coffee bean to the liquid awesomeness in your mug.
Like the coffee bean, there are so many critical steps for the process of an enduring love like the one Jesus demonstrated to and commanded of his friends. How we choose to love each other is a process that can be grueling and difficult at some points, especially with people who aren’t like us or, let’s be honest, those we barely like.
However, enduring the grueling and intricate process of loving each other anyway is the potent kind of love that Jesus helps us experience and challenges us to live out in our daily decision-making as Christ followers. The rewards of engaging and sticking to loving without abandon are greater than anything else in this world, even your most favorite brand of coffee.
PRAYER Though we may not all enjoy coffee, let its vitality accelerate our hearts, Love, so that we might be able to give and receive love freely and faithfully. Amen.About the Writer:
PHIWA LANGENI is the Ambassador for Innovation & Engagement of the United Church of Christ. They are also Founder of Salus Center, the only LGBTQ resource and community center in Lansing, MI.

Source: “Running from Empty” | 2023 Lent Devotional by the Stillspeaking Writers’ Group, made up of United Church of Christ ministers and writers who collaborate on resources for people in the church, outside the church, and not sure about the church.