Thursday, March 6, 2014

My Coffee Addiction

I recently made the decision to put more effort into making myself a better person. I want to gain more strength physically and spiritually as well.

In order to do that I made a few commitments to myself, one of which was quitting coffee.

To most people this probably seems strange. I mean, It's just coffee. There's nothing wrong it.

Well, It's true.. It's just coffee, but I was raised in the LDS faith. We are taught that it is a commandment of God that we do not partake of coffee or tea.

I'm not going to get into the reasons why that's a commandment because It doesn't matter. God said don't drink it, so regardless of my opinions, I shouldn't be drinking it.

I started drinking coffee when I was in middle school, 7th grade probably. One of my best friends at the time would show up to school with an iced caramel macchiato from Starbucks almost every single day. I don't know why, but there was something about her holding that Starbucks cup that looked so glamorous to me. I wanted to look THAT cool, so as often as I could, I got my mom to stop by Starbucks so that I could get my very own caramel macchiato. If not in the morning, then whenever I could.

Thinking back, I don't think I even enjoyed drinking caramel macchiatos that much. What I really loved was that thick, gooey caramel that they drizzled all over it. I could eat that stuff with a spoon.

By my junior year of high school I HAD to stop by Starbucks on the way to school, or during lunch time. I even had really strong cravings for it in the afternoon that I tried my best to ignore. I didn't realize I was addicted. All I really knew was that I loved coffee.

Around this time that I started to get anxiety and experience heart palpations, two common side effects of caffeine consumption. I didn't know that it was coffee that was causing it.

When I moved to Utah for college, I got a job on campus as a barista. This was like a dream come true for me because, well, I love coffee. I had always wanted to work as a barista. At this point, I drank coffee all day long. Quad latte for breakfast, iced coffee in the afternoon, another iced coffee after that. I'm not kidding you, I enjoy it that much.

I was not healthy physically or mentally. I could feel it.
I wondered why I couldn't feel the spirit as strong as I had in the past.
I wanted to be close to my Heavenly Father, but something was off.

Growing up I'd tell myself, "Heavenly Father loves and knows me, so he won't not let me in to the highest degree of heaven for doing this very small, little thing. I do everything else right."

That was always my excuse and it made sense, until one day someone I love said to me, "Are you really going to let such a small thing keep you from getting into the Celestial Kingdom?"

It was then that it all really made sense to me. It is the small things that make the biggest difference.
Even though coffee in the eyes of most is a "small" thing, It's not meant to be that way. There is a reason God gave us the commandments that he did and by obeying the tiniest laws, we can show him that he is our priority.

Each day I get through the day without drinking coffee, I can feel God's love for me so strong. He is proud of me for keeping his commandments and in return for my devotion, he allows the Holy Spirit to be with me at all times.

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