International (MNN) — You like your coffee. You like it strong. A couple of cups a day…maybe more. I like mine more café au lait — a nice shade of beige. You like bold. I like flavored.
The point is, we drink it daily. Coffee is the world’s second most valuable traded commodity, behind only petroleum. That means there’s a lot of money behind it and a lot of financial energy coming out of it.
At the same time, let’s say you’re also passionate about helping to provide access to the Gospel for anyone who wants to hear it…both passions require energy and generate lots of movement…so how does one fuel the other? We’re talking about putting the ephemeral and the eternal together.
Jeff Buckman, a businessman and a board member of a mission agency, was pondering the same question about a year and a half ago. “We just wanted to be able to harness coffee and put the profits to work for the Gospel.” He figured out a way to use coffee profits from Twin Valley Coffee to help fund mission projects. Then about three weeks ago, he launched ‘Coffee helping TWR’ to do the same thing.
Here’s how it works. Buckman has a business relationship with Twin Valley Coffee, a company owned by a family who are also followers of Christ. Many of their coffees are sourced through Fair Trade or Direct Trade Relationships to provide sustainable support for the farmers who spend countless hours of care and attention to growing the best specialty grade coffees. Buckman also has another company called ‘Buckman’s Inc.’ Through Buckman’s Inc, they pre-buy the raw coffee beans, as well as all of the raw materials for packaging, like the bags, and single serve cups, and take care of the web development and customer service for CoffeeHelpingTWR.com purchases.
What’s more, 100 percent of the profits fund Trans World Radio projects or missionaries. Buckman explains, “We get to know a lot of missionaries through our church and mission trips. Missionaries have projects and they need to be funded. This is a unique way to be able to fund them. We don’t make one dime on it, we just do this to be able to see the profits go to the Lord’s work.”
At CoffeeHelpingTWR.com, you can even pick a specific missionary couple to support with the profits of your order.
Why not just let these couples raise funds through deputation? That works too, says Buckman, however, he points out, “The more funds they can have for projects and the more funds they can have to be able to put into ministry, then the more we see that translating into people coming to know the Lord.”
In other words, by providing the means to allow the missionaries to stay on the field, the funds actually allow them to focus on what they’re in the field to do.
Consider the impact your involvement can have in your circles of influence. “We have found that every 50 households leads to $1,700 a year in income or funds (in general) that goes to missionaries. Now, if those 50 people then would take (CoffeeHelpingTWR.com) that to their workplace or to their churches, pretty much, when you start thinking about all the different possibilities of coffee — there’s just a lot of them out there; the ending goal is to see souls saved.”
You can watch videos about the enterprise and then place an order for one of the tasty varieties: breakfast blend, Nicaragua Café Diego, Peru, Brazil, Ethiopia Yirgacheffe, pumpkin spice, maple walnut, and many others. (By the way, the most popular coffee is Ethiopian Yirgacheffe, but Buckman’s favorite is Nicaragua Café Diego.)
With every sip of high-quality coffee, you’ll be helping TWR missionaries speak hope to the world. After you’ve had your first cup, average coffee will no longer be acceptable.