The LORD is my chosen portion and my cup;
you hold my lot.
The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
I have a goodly heritage.
– Psalm 16:5-6 (NRSV)
My preferred cup is venti-sized, with a green mermaid on the side. I know what people say about her, of course. I know what people say about those of us who love her and visit her often. I’m clear about her impact on my wallet. But still I appreciate the comfort of her constancy and the satisfaction of enjoying the hot caffeinated beverages she provides.
In these days when nothing is constant, a single cup of constancy feels luxurious, even miraculous.
Most of us don’t long for the whole world to be ours. We don’t crave constant praise from acolytes who guard our egos from injury. We aren’t consumed by the desire to have the entire banquet of life focused on us all the time. We aren’t under false illusions that fate is obligated to keep us happy.
We simply long for one cup that pours out joy. For one portion that we can share. For one lot that includes love.
Perhaps that’s a lot to ask. Enjoying a drink from Starbucks is an easier longing to satisfy.
But it’s a satisfaction that fades quickly, leaving me wanting more.
The psalmist proclaims that one cup can be sufficient. One portion can be satisfying. One lot – one life – is no more and no less than what God promises. Just one – not two or three or five or all. Just one. And these limits are good. These limits are godly. These limits are ours to choose, and they are sufficient.
Even now, God, my heart cries out for more. More constancy. More comfort. More triumph. Definitely more coffee. Test my longings, reveal my cravings, and remind me of what is truly needed.