I've always known that my obsession with good coffee held some spiritual significance. Erwin McManus recently confirmed my belief in his book, "Soul Cravings."
"Science is only now discovering the medicinal value of the sacred bean. If all goes well, it will soon be its own food group. I've never been pregnant (my wife volunteered both times), but I do know the power of cravings. Is my relationship to java a problem? No, espresso is a guilty pleasure, and I am grateful for my dealer...um...barista...
There are cravings within me, though, that pull on me like an addiction...
My soul craves, but for what I don't know...
And there I tell you is at least half of my problem. I've tried so many things and done so many things, certain they would satisfy my soul, but they never did."
I identified with this quote, because I know the craving, the restlessness I feel when I deprive my brain of caffeine. I find myself obsessed with fulfilling my desire for a good cup of espresso.
On other days, I know the restlessness that resides in my own soul, and it has nothing to do with coffee. I deprive myself of a real connection to God, and I can feel the longing in a tangible way. But unlike my addiction, er, craving, for coffee, I don't always know where to go to fill up my soul. I can always find a Starbucks around the corner to meet my espresso demands (thanks to their aggressive global marketing), but for some reason my soul gets lost in seeking God. It's as if God isn't interested in flooding the market with his label so that he's available at every corner store and market. It's as if God hides a bit, wanting to be found.
And so I, like McManus says, find myself craving the love and significance that only God can bring, but seeking it everywhere else. It is when I allow my soul to "come home" and rest in God that my craving can finally be satisfied.
"For Thou hast formed us for Thyself, and our hearts are restless till they find rest in Thee." St. Augustine
When you find yourself craving, may your journey take you to Him.