Full-bodied, strong brewed messages

Pulpit Reflections

One of my Sunday tasks at my last congregation was to brew the coffee before our Sunday Bible class. I didn’t mind because I’m particular about my coffee. 

On one Sunday, as some of our members were grabbing their cups of joe, I heard, “We make coffee at home, but Pastor makes COFFEE!” I like my coffee full-bodied and strong, and hearing no complaints, I suspected others did too.

But it was not always this way. It wasn’t until college that I acquired a taste for coffee, but what I started with, you could hardly call coffee. It did have SOME coffee in it, along with flavoring and steamed milk and whipped cream. 

But isn’t that how we start to learn to appreciate things? Starting with easy, sweet tasting flavors, then eventually, as our palate develops, we begin to appreciate and recognize the array of flavors that come from a simple cup of which you once could only appreciate the aroma.

In a similar way, this happens with faith. “Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.” (Luke 18:17 ESV) 

When we have our first encounter with the Gospel, either in the spoken Word, or in the waters of Baptism, faith is stirred in our hearts, receiving the good news of salvation in Jesus Christ. 

Like a newborn child that trusts in her parents for all things to live, by faith we trust in the simple and sweet good news that we are forgiven because of what God has done on the hill of Calvary. 

Likewise, as a child grows and matures, so we grow and mature in our appreciation and understanding of fullness of the Gospel.

We all know and have heard those ‘hard sayings’ in the Bible; the passages that just don’t seem to fit. We find it easy to our childish ways, pushing them aside, saying “I don’t like it!” But remember the words of Jesus that we are to be like a child and receive it, just as we received the love of the Heavenly Father thru His dear Son. 

In all God’s Word we continue the goodness of the Lord. “So put away all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy and envy and all slander. 

Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up into salvation—if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good.” (1 Peter 2:1-3 ESV)

I still enjoy the occasional fancy coffee. But nothing starts my morning off better than full-bodied, strong-brewed messages from God’s Word, and a cup of coffee.

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