(photo by kristen.michelle)
Last night I went to Starbucks to meet a very old and distant friend that I had met and known only 3 months SIX years ago (at a summer job). I randomly ran into her at this same starbucks two weeks ago and though it had been so long since i have seen her and we haven't kept in touch at all, i was near tears as i ran to hug her, "KATRINA, it's me, Hannah, from Summer Project!" Being in a new place, "old" friends are one of my most precious gifts living here. It is so refreshing to have conversations that are not so introductory, not always making first impressions and wondering if you're accepted yet. No, being with old friends, all that muck is out of the way and there is a mutual understanding that we know and accept each other, no matter how changed, even.
For me, a perfect day would involve sitting at Starbucks with someone else, talking and enjoying coffee. I'm not sure how this has become such a sacred thing for me, especially after working at 'Bucks these last two years. But it hasn't lost its meaning.
In college, God had put inside of me a heart for loving women. I still believe that God has created women so beautifully and unique and many of them do not know how truly precious they are in his sight - that he actually DANCES over them with SINGING!!! Our God, created every person so lovingly and loves each one with commitment and sacrifice. And I think that in this world, women, especially, can't believe it! And as I met with women, i saw many of them suffering deeply and healing mightily and just trying to figure out how to grow from girls into women. And i loved watching them grow and watching God move, and most of this happened over a cup of coffee (the watching, not necessarily the growing).
Yes, the coffee shop atmosphere is so special to me. My best friend in college and I would get together once a week to offer each other prayers and accountability and love at our local Starbucks. Even still, though i only see her twice a year, we meet up at a Starbucks between her town and my parent's town in Colorado every time.
I had a wonderful woman in my life who spent time with me weekly at our local coffee shop. She encouraged me and inspired me and really loved me as I was trying to figure out what God had in store for my life. She prayed with me through huge decisions like getting married, moving to Kenya, etc... And each week, we prayed together and studied the Bible together over...coffee!!
And whenever I am home, my favorite times are sitting in the kitchen with some coffee, talking to my family - somehow this atmosphere opens the table for some really intimate and deep conversations. Just now remembering mornings with Dad, Mom, evenings with Janelle, and afternoons with my Grandmother, all precious conversations over coffee (and probably some dessert).
Still, when i get together with many of my friends and family, there is coffee during conversation. I have a hard time drinking my coffee on the go. For me, it is to be enjoyed slowly, inviting quality time. It is more than just a cup of caffeine, it is a cup of love!
How amazing, the people that i have known and the relationships that have grown over a cup of coffee. Ahhhh! And just writing this makes me miss you all so much right now.
Ha, and i'm also thinking that for some of us it was actually beer, and not coffee, wasn't it? ha!