Let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. Matthew 5:16
At The CIA Starbucks, Even The Baristas Are Covert
The new supervisor thought his idea was innocent enough. He wanted the baristas to write the names of customers on their cups to speed up lines and ease confusion, just like other Starbucks do around the world.
But these aren’t just any customers. They are regulars at the CIA Starbucks.
“They could use the alias ‘Polly-O string cheese’ for all I care,” said a food services supervisor at the Central Intelligence Agency. “But giving any name at all was making people — you know, the undercover agents — feel very uncomfortable. It just didn’t work for this location.”
This purveyor of skinny lattes and double cappuccinos is deep inside the agency’s forested Langley, Va., compound. Because the campus is a highly secured island, few people leave for coffee, and the lines, both in the morning and mid-afternoon, can stretch down the hallway
Welcome to the “Stealthy Starbucks,” as a few officers affectionately call it.
The nine baristas who work here are frequently briefed about security risks. “We say if someone is really interested in where they work and asks too many questions, then they need to tell us,” the supervisor said.
One 27-year-old woman was offered a job and told that she would be working in food services in Langley. On her first morning of work, she recalled, she put a location in her GPS and nothing came up. So she called the person who had hired her and got an explanation of the address. “Before I knew it, I realized I was now working for the Starbucks at the CIA,” she said.
Unfortunately, she can’t boast about where she works at parties. “The most I can say to friends is that I work in a federal building,” she said.
What kind of Christian are you?
1. A Covert Christian
John 19:38 Later, Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate for the body of Jesus. Now Joseph was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly because he feared the Jewish leaders.
Covert Christians are undercover Christians. They don’t let anybody know they are Christians or that they go to church. They believe their Christian faith is “Top Secret”.
Joseph of Arimathea was this type of follower of Christ. He sincerely believed that Jesus was the Son of God, but he was fearful of the reaction of the other Pharisees. It was not until the crisis of the death of Jesus that he came forward and declared his loyalty to him.
2. A Chameleon Christian
Romans 12:2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is–his good, pleasing and perfect will.
You know what a chameleon is don’t you? It’s an animal that likes to change its color depending on what’s around. He blends into his background for safety.
When a Chameleon Christian is around church friends they pray, read their Bible, talk about spiritual things and their behavior is godly.
When a Chameleon Christian is around his non-Christian friends, they shift. They act like them, they talk like them, their behavior, language, and pleasures are just like their unsaved friends.
This is a Chameleon Christian; he changes according to his environment or who he’s around.
3. A Crisis Christian
Matthew 14:30 But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!”
Maybe you’re a Crisis Christian. To you, God is someone you talk to when you have some kind of crisis or emergency. Crisis Christians only need God when there is an emergency. The other times they never think about God at all.
4. A Conspicuous Christian
A Conspicuous Christian stands out in day to day life. Their friends, their coworkers, and their neighbors know that they are Christians because of what they say, what they do, and how they live.
Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes.
2 Timothy 1:8 So do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord or of me his prisoner. Rather, join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God.
Stop Hiding Your Faith
God is not pleased with covert Christianity. He wants you to shine your light in a dark world so that others will see that you are committed to Christ and that your faith is backed up by boldness.
1 Peter 3:14-16 “Do not fear their threats ; do not be frightened.”But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.”