Sunday, June 19, 2011

One Banana Peel At a Time

Whenever we drive through certain portions of cities, my husband always remarks about the amount of litter on the streets. He wonders why people don't care and simply litter as they go.

I have never in my life, littered, except for maybe apple cores. I wouldn't dream of throwing down anything that was not biodegradable.

I have been noticing in contrast, the litter in the country. It is there. Although, it does not look as bad as the city, there are a few things to consider. First the city has a larger number of people in a smaller, more compact area. Our country roads are long and unfortunately provide a large vast area for littering. If you keep an eye out for it, you will be surprised at how much there really is. It doesn't look like much all spread out, but there is quite a bit.

One of the differences in the country is there are a number of thoughtful individuals who pick up the trash or recycling on their walks. I have often seen people with plastic bags filled with trash. Some just pick up the cans and bottles. My husband used to do that years ago and got quite a bit that he washed and traded in. Those nickles added up.

Recently I had a conversation with someone about these people we see picking up the trash every day on their walks. This person said, "They pick up my banana peels."

I said, "You throw your banana peels in the woods?"

He said, "No. I throw them in the road."

"You throw them in the road? Why?"

"To see if they'd pick it up." He said he did it once every other week or so.

I truly did not know what to say to that.

I was trying to think of a parable to make out of this. I thought of the Bible verse that says to not cause your brother to stumble. Well, he wasn't intending them to slip on the banana peel--just causing them to bend over. Also, that verse refers to fellow believers.

I cannot get into the thought process of this person. It boggles my mind. I guess I should be glad that I don't understand it (be not conformed to this world....).

I wonder what the people think who pick up his banana peels regularly. Do they talk angrily about the inconsideration of others? Do they have the slightest thought that they are being tested?

Maybe the lesson isn't in the banana peel thrower, but in those picking up the trash. Every day we all have "trash" to deal with. Some days it seems too much to bear. Some days there is a lot and some days are nice with very little. Some days we have to deal with the same trash, such as this banana peel, over and over.

These people diligently pick up the banana peels every time. I am sure they would rather that it wasn't there to be picked up but they deal with the trash in their path every day--no matter who put it there. In fact, none of this trash is "theirs" but they are cleaning up after the worldly paths that they have to travel while on this earth.

Likewise, there are those that come along side of us when we find ourselves overburdened with the "trash" of this world. They may not be able to take all our trash away, but they can help us climb to the top of our heap and maybe help us deal with it one banana peel at a time. I thank those people.

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