Human Hands

Next week we’ll be looking into methods of processing coffee cherries.  But before we do, let’s take a few moments to simply be thankful for hands.  Human hands.

Hands plant the coffee seeds at the beginning of the rainy season.

Hands fold in wait for the rain.

Hands stroke the edge of a branch, the tip of a budding leaf, the petal of a fragrant white flower.

Hands search through the trees for parasites and others enemies of the beans.

When the green cherries have ripened to a lush, fine red, hands pluck the cherries and drop them in a burlap sack or a wide, hand-woven basket.

Hands pour the cherries out to be separated, fermented, washed, dried….  Hands guide every step of the process.

The cherries are now beans.

Hands sort the beans.

Hands bag the beans.

Those beans will soon be sent to the roaster…

Now cup your hands around your mug of morning coffee.  Feel the warmth, the weight.  Human hands in Kenya or Brazil or Hawaii worked to cultivate this coffee.  They coaxed the growth, the harvest.  Can you see those hands, hardened from the days and years of picking?  Whether you notice them or not, they are also cupped around your mug this very morning.  They are unseen and providential.  They are beautiful and human.