Jesus Lessons from the Starbucks Drive-thru
It’s early on Christmas Eve and we’re headed to a church service. There’s a short line at Starbucks so we drive in and order our favorite drinks. As we round the corner of the building, there’s an old beat-up Toyota Corolla pulling away. I roll down the window and hear, “Sir, your total is $8.32 but the people in the car that just left paid for your order.” “You’re kidding me?” I said. Miriam was as startled as I was. I teared up, thinking, “Our car is so much nicer and newer than theirs. They couldn’t possibly have looked in their rear-view mirror!” About that time, I thought, “Hey, let’s keep this going.” I looked behind us to make sure it wasn’t a bus full of caffeine-starved college students. It was just a regular car so I told the cashier we wanted to pay for the car behind us. She said, “That’s great. Their order is $5.13!” I smiled, thinking “Hey, I came out ok on this deal!” and off we drove.
So here’s what God showed me in less than 90 seconds . . .
- Generosity starts with one giver but once it starts, it spreads . . . it’s contagious.
Lesson: I didn’t think about paying for another car’s coffee until someone did it for me. We catch on to generosity when we realize how generous God has been to us.
- The first person to be generous is the most courageous. They have to overcome their fear of being taken advantage of and just give.
Lesson: I don’t know if the people who bought our coffee noticed our better car, but even if they did, they didn’t let it hold them back . . . they decided to be generous anyway. Jesus selflessly loved us first, even in the face of our sin and unbelief.
- Generous people rarely see the results of their giving.
Lesson: I doubt the people who paid for our coffee will ever know we ‘paid it forward’ to the folks behind us. I’d love to know how many cars kept it going. When we give to the Lord, whether it’s to our church or other ministries, we rarely see all God does with our gifts.
- The best gifts are those given anonymously, where the giver doesn’t want any credit or recognition. They give from their heart instead of their ego.
Lesson: When the beat-up Toyota drove away, there was no way we could say thank you; they couldn’t get any accolades or recognition for what they did. Jesus told us to give like this. . . in private (Matthew 6:3).
- The size of the gift doesn’t matter as much as the motivation of the giver.
Lesson: While I was the one who was jokingly comparing the ‘cost’ of my gift to the one I received, it didn’t matter. It was the demonstration of brotherly love that moved me.
I hope you’ll join me in making 2017 a year of generous living.
Scripture: And He looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into the treasury, and He saw also a certain poor widow putting in two mites. So He said, “Truly I say to you that this poor widow has put in more than all. (Luke 21:1-3)
Mentor Tip: Mentoring creates a high-trust relationship where really touchy subjects can be tackled . . . subjects like giving. I can’t imagine any other time or situation where a man can be personally challenged to be generous toward God.
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[…] Jesus Lessons from the Starbucks Drive Thru by Regi Campbell […]
Always, always, always get rid of self! That was Jesus example. Our self absorbed “me” generations get in the way! Arise each day with the attitude of service and giving and God will provide you with opportunities if you ask Him!