Can you believe that at the beginning of June Amber and I will have been in Florida for two years! We left Arkansas in 2007 to come be a part of what God was doing at Crosspoint Church in Spring Hill, FL. For the past two years Amber and I have served as interns (1 yr for Amber and 2 for me) and Amber has been an office assistant (for the past year). My internship is over at the end of this month andwe decided that it was time to move on. Not to leave Florida, but not to spend another year as an intern. I won’t be dropping out of Crosspoint, but maybe fulfill another role that I will get to later.
Anyways, so what is next? For those who may not know, Amber and I do not envision ourselves staying in Florida longer than another year. We plan to stay until next June because I can teach and Amber can continue as a marketing director. But after that…
I have had an idea/dream that has kept growing over the past few years. Three years ago I wrote the outline for a missions program for Crosspoint. At the end I mentioned that I would like to start a coffeehouse to support missions. Well, that last part has stuck with me and has always been in the back of my mind (or in the pit of my stomach) since we have been here and has morphed and changed along with me.
So that is my dream – to open a non-profit coffeehouse!
Those who know my wife and I know we have always been passionate about missions. I have also become much more globally aware of poverty, disease, and human injustice. I am convinced that these issues are close to the heart of God and therefore should be close to my own heart. There are so many great organizations and people out there bringing peace, love, and transformation to those in need and I want to be able to come along side them and support what they are doing. I think that capitalism has the power to do this. Therefore I want to start a business that will use its profits to make a difference in the world! To support orphanages, clean water initiatives, microfinance organizations, and local foodbanks and shelters.
I want this business to be a coffeehouse for a lot of reasons! First, I love to serve people. I love to meet new people and hear their stories and make them feel welcome. My dream is for this coffeehouse to become a third place (1st place is home, 2nd is work) where people come for friendship andconversation. Second, I have fallen in love with coffee! The bean itself has an incredible ability to transform communities. Through fair trade (and other certifications which may be even better) coffee growers are slowly coming out of poverty, able to take their children out of the fields and put them back into classrooms. I also love the drink itself. There are so many layers and complexity to it. Third, I love music and art, even though I suck at both! I want to be able to support local artists by connecting them with customers and helping to spread their message. Last, I do not feel called to a traditional ministry role, but I still feel God’s calling on my life. I still desire to see God transform those I meet and want to connect them to His mission in the world. In a coffeehouse I will be able to do this. To make relationships and discuss God with people I form relationships with, what many refer to as incarnational ministry.
I have thought about this for a long time and have a whole lot more swimming in my head. If you would like to know more then stay tuned because I will have plenty of posts to come on the coffeehouse. You can also contact me and I would love to discuss it with you. This summer I plan to apply for non-profit status and write the business plan, so please hold me accountable to that!
Finally, please keep Amber and I in your prayers. When I sit and think about it I feel completely overwhelmed. But I know I have to keep trusting God and continue to pursue this without abandon!