HOW COFFEE AND MISSIONS IS DIFFERENT THAN YOU THINK

Madison Smucker
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  As part of our Discipleship Training School, you can choose an elective to be a part of. This means spending four hours a week getting to dive into a particular area or passion and getting to actually do it. But this is more than just learning another skill. Everything we do, we want to point to Jesus. And sometimes that looks different than we think

When you first think of a Barista Elective you probably imagine yourself standing behind a cafe counter making beautiful latte art. You probably see espresso shot after espresso shot being intricately pulled from the machine with the smell of coffee filling the room. It’s not likely that your first thought is yourself sweeping the floors at the end of your shift at the cafe or praying while wiping down tables. But all of these scenarios are the heart of hospitality that the Barista Elective carries.

I knew that working an espresso machine and teaching others to serve coffee would be fun, but what really got me excited was being able to share my enjoyment and passion for cafe ministry. It is such a unique form of ministry. You aren’t necessarily looking to have conversations about salvation like street evangelism or planning in-depth teachings. Most of the time what it looks like welcoming people into a safe space filled with smiling faces and the comforting smell of coffee. It is the honor of seeing and making people feel loved, asking them about their day, finding a simple connection point that can easily make it the best part of their day and your day. 

In the most recent Barista Elective, we had the opportunity to partner with a cafe in town. This cafe Uno is a youth cafe run by the local churches to reach out to the community. When we were there, we were able to build relationships with the people that came for drinks, clean the cafe, and practice all of our latte making skills. We were able to bless the customers with great service but also the people who volunteer there every week by helping with whatever tasks they had. Cleaning the toilets isn’t always the favorite part of the job for anyone. But as we shifted our heart position and looked at the big picture, it was easy to see how it impacted the whole ministry. We weren’t in this for ourselves or our own enjoyment but where there to serve those around us. Something as small as making the place clean made people feel welcomed and wanted. 

That is the goal of hospitality.

To show people that they are welcomed and wanted.

The Barista Elective is about more than learning how to make a great latte. It is that too! But we also want to shift our mindsets to work together in seeing others and loving them. And sometimes love just happens to come in the form of a rich cup of coffee and a clean floor. 

If you want to join us for our next Barista Elective, apply for a DTS and select “Barista”. 

Author

Madison Smucker

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