Setting: The kitchen table
Characters: an apple, a mango and a
Scenario: The three fruits lie sliced in separate bowls—ready to be served for dinnertime. Mother and daughter come in and look at the plates. Daughter picks a piece of pineapple.
Daughter: It’s amazing how that man in the market expertly cuts this pineapple. So fast! I wouldn’t stand holding a pineapple for long. It hurts on my hand.
Mother: Easier to peel the mango and apple?
Daughter: Yes, but I like the apple. They say you don’t have to peel it. Just munch it!
The three fruits started their own conversation. Let’s listen in.
Pineapple: See, that’s always my problem No one wants to hold me! I always hurt their hands.
Mango: But hey, didn’t you hear the little girl? People love to watch you being peeled. It’s an art, they say—trimming off your pointed leaves, turning your green top into a handle, removing your peel and then removing your sockets. Fascinating!
Apple: Yeah, I always envied you after you’re peeled and sliced. Look at how beautiful your edges are. Me? Some people don’t even peel me. They bite me right away and munch everything in me, peelings and all.
Pineapple: But look, Appo, if someone does peel you, he uses a peeler and then peel you in a spiral. It’s exceptionally easy and just as fast as a knife. They treat you more gently than me, huhuhu!
Apple: Stop crying, Piney. Your peeling may be hard and a bit thorny, but hey you’re so sweeter than us. Don’t fruit flies get attracted so much to you?
Mango: Hey, I’m sweet, too! But people don’t peel me. They cut through me! Good for you, Piney and Appo. At least peeling off your outer skin is shallow and so your cores don’t get stabbed to the core. I’m one of those fruits that people avoid buying because they don’t know how to cut me.
Pineapple: Hahaha, true, Mangeo. You’re so soft inside that if you’re not properly cut, you end up mushy and messy.
Mango: Go on, make fun of me, Piney, you hard-skinned fool!
Pineapple: Sorry, my friend. Didn’t mean to hurt you.
Apple: Mangeo, don’t you see? Even if you’re cut not peeled, you’re tasty. You’re low in calories and can be eaten fresh or cooked .
Pineapple: Yeah, and you’re great with just about anything—chicken, fish, salsa, pancakes, smoothies, on ice cream, fruit salad, etc.
Mango: All right, I’m actually sweet inside, but people sometimes abuse my sweetness and softness that I end up mashed. Worse, if they drop me, I can’t be good to eat anymore. Unlike both of you—so hard outside.
Apple: Not me. Piney is. He’s of hard stuff. My skin is too thin.
Pineapple: Hah! People don’t want to touch me. They even stuff me hard into sacks and baskets. They think just because I appear hard on the outside, they can just throw me around. It still hurts you know.
Apple: Okay, okay, why are we bickering over our peelings? They’re just our covering. What’s inside is that matters. Hey guys, look at us now. They’ve peeled off our outer skins and we’re so beautiful-looking now for them.
Mango: We get served in a little while and we make people happy. We complete their meal.
All: And that’s all that matters, whether thick skin, thin skin, hard skin or soft skin.
And as they merrily held on to each other, Mother whisked them away into the dining table.
God doesn’t focus on our outward appearance. It is what’s on the inside that matters most to Him. “The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7)
Sadly, we live in a superficial world where people do judge on appearance. It is important to present ourselves as nicely as possible, but God does not call us to go to extremes. Let’s be aware of why we do things to look good. Try asking yourself: 1. Do I focused more on my weight, clothes, or makeup than I fixing my eyes on God? 2. Do I judge people right away by their appearance?
If you answered “yes” to either question, then it’s time to reflect on your priorities. The Bible tells us to look closer at our hearts and actions rather than our presentation and appearance. “In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous, but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.” ( Matthew 23:28.
So do you also feel like an apple, a mango and a pineapple? Or maybe you make others feel like they are apples, mangoes and pineapples?