The Oasis - May 29, 2019
Author: Rev. Estelle Margarones
May 29, 2019
May 29, 2019
Rev. Estelle Margarones
When I was little, my mother had a coffee cup collection. There must have been 20 or 30 mugs in our dish cabinet. As a child, I knew she loved her coffee. My siblings and I would get her a mug for every birthday, for Mother's Day, and for Christmas. There were so many mugs--and always room for more. I admit there was a period when I just thought some people collected Hummels, others collected stamps, and my mother collected coffee cups.
It wasn't until I was an adult that I learned that my mother's coffee cup collection wasn't for her benefit, but for ours. For the last several decades, coffee cups have been fairly inexpensive, so it was something we could afford. We could show her that we were aware of something she enjoyed (drinking coffee) and we could be part of that experience (by giving her a mug to drink from).
To the casual observer, the mugs could have appeared to be a 'mish-mosh' of everything, with various colors and sayings, without rhyme or reason. However, if you knew that the mugs were given by grateful children to a loving parent, you would see the connection amidst the diverse compilation. There were mugs with violets (mom's name was Viola), mugs that said "Happy Birthday", and mugs with images that looked like her cats.
Imagine with me that God is our parent and that we are the grateful children. If we could stock a kitchen cabinet with things that would be meaningful to God, what would they be? How can we be part of something that would make God happy? What gifts can we give to God to show our connection and gratitude?
I have my own coffee cup collection (substantially smaller than my mother's). I have a mug from a place I worked 30 years ago, another with a UCC "Be The Church" logo, one with my photos of my nephews on it, and the one I have on my desk now, which I got at a friend's 40th birthday party in 2005.
My coffee mug says, "Dance as though no one is watching you, Love as through you have never been hurt before, Sing as though no one can hear you, Live as through heaven is on earth." I appreciate this mug for it's many messages: live without judgment, live with forgiveness, and live as though this life is a gift from our Creator.
This coffee cup invites me (and all of us!) to freely share of ourselves, without fear of judgment. It invites us to live fully, without letting hurt from the past continue to affect our present. It invites us to completely engage with Christ and one another at a spiritual level which must then infuse our physical level. Faith is a more powerful fuel than even coffee!
Jesus said, "I have come so that they might have life and have it abundantly." (John 10:10)
For too short a time, in Jesus, Heaven was here on earth. If we will embody his teachings and his grace, we can reflect his love and light. Perhaps in doing so, in a small way, we can be part of bringing heaven to earth. (And maybe, just maybe, that's the gift we give to God!)