There is a great deal that could be written on the subject of bananas, but I’ll restrain myself – really I will.
I am what is known as a ‘baby boomer’ born within a few years of the end of the war. During the war the importing of foods from other countries was put on the back burner and one of those things was bananas. At some point in the fifties bananas (and oranges) were on sale once again. They were being extensively promoted, bearing in mind that no child would ever have seen or eaten a banana. The company selling them was called Fyffes and each banana carried a small navy oval-shaped sticker with the company name on it. As an incentive to children, if you collected so many stickers and sent them off the company would send you a banana shaped and sized whistle instrument. I say instrument because it had small number of holes not unlike a recorder. To get something of that kind for free was a new concept to me, my pocket money at that time would have been around sixpence (two and a half pence today’s coinage). Naturally I collected the stickers and did the necessary and my new toy duly arrived, I was chuffed to bits.
One day when I was around eight or nine I had to stay in bed unwell with a temperature and much pain around one ear. My banana was put to good use, kept on my bed so that I could let my mother know if I needed her – it was too far to the kitchen for her to hear me call. The doctor had been sent for, as one did back then (boy, do I feel old now!), and when he walked into the room he commented on my banana mistaking it for a real one which caused us all some amusement. Life’s pleasures were all very simple then.
It was bananas that gave me a wry chuckle recently when Hubert read aloud to me a snippet of something he was reading. A fictional character had commented that in his father’s opinion politicians were like bananas; they started off green, turned yellow and then became bent! Perhaps this is a less formal way of saying that ‘power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely’. This also applies in many areas of corporate and government activity at other levels – and we won’t mention bankers in case it affects our blood pressure.
As I thought about it later, I recalled various biblical people who had a reputation for being rather nasty, they tended not to be poor either. Were they born mean bullies or thieves? No, I don’t think so. Nothing has changed since those times, most were probably nice children who grew up and were corrupted by people they associated with and the positions/status they achieved when they became adults. One of the best Scripture accounts is that of Paul on the road to Damascus when he underwent a dramatic conversion to the cause of Christ and turned away from his bad life and spent the rest of his life preaching, teaching and living the gospel. This was done through the power in Christ and should inspire us to do all we can to take the gospel out of the churches to those who badly need it – whether they know it or not.