By Andy & Renie Bowman
Blackened old banana peels, egg shells, used coffee grounds, moldy grapes and dried-up orange skins. The diet of champions. Loaded with antioxidants and nutrition, and guaranteed to make the body healthier. And so appealing to the eye. Just makes you drool at the very thought of loading your plate, right?
Well, ummm. Most people – not so much.
“Are you crazy?!” Ask any teen if they want a heaping helping of this delightfully healthy food, and you will most likely get blasted with their particular version of that statement, along with a disgusted roll of their eyes. Can’t blame ‘em. If you were to hand me a snack of any of those things, my own answer wouldn’t be much sweeter.
But take a look at this garbage from another point of view. Ants will notify the queen of their colony, “Hey, Your Highness, we just came across a whole smorgasbord of really good stuff! You want us to form a line to begin transporting it all back to your storage bins?” That army of ants will cart away every tiny crumb that is loose. (And given a chance, they will remove your entire pantry.)
They don’t view our garbage leftovers as trash, but as a real treasure trove. Because, the truth is, that garbage is healthy stuff! Put it in a blender with water and puree the fire out of that mess until you have a disgusting brown liquid. Mix it into your garden soil, where you are going to plant your vegetables. Then later on, watch your plants stand and salute you for having the forethought to give them some of the nutrition they need to grow big and healthy – before they were even planted.
Same thing happens with us humans. What we know as painful events in our lives – things we view as horrible garbage – is the very things that our Creator and Maintainer is using to feed us and grow us into mature, useful adults. But just like if we were handed a plate of unedible food, our reaction to the bad things that happen is usually, “Are you crazy?!! This is horrible stuff! I hate what’s happening, and this can’t be good for me.”
But those among us who are gardeners know what a good dose of ugly, organic food can do for a growing young plant. And so does God. You might just call Him the Master Gardener, who knows exactly what each of us needs in our life to make us grow up emotionally. He is very aware that a steady diet of ‘the good life’ will make us self-centered, undependable, and immature. So, out comes the Creator’s blender to create a hodgepodge of the needed heartaches that makes us more like Him in the end. Loving, mature and caring.
I don’t care for the taste of that awful liquid He doles out any more than you. But it does do the job.