Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Fruit (10/10/05)
TITLE: Balancing the scales
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We were bringing them a small form of relief. Bags of meal, canned food and some fresh fruit. We had filled our plane to its maximum capacity to bring as much as we could. Yet, as always, we knew it wouldn’t be enough.
It broke my heart each time I went there. The desperate pleas from outstretched hands, reaching for a meal that would last them a week. I wrestled with the injustice of it all, the ambivalence of the rich toward the neglect of the poor. Hundreds of people die each die from hunger, while others a few thousand miles away gorge themselves with food. I wondered how humanity had managed to become so apathetic.
Then, as I saw two little black boys, neither of them older than three years old, fighting over an apple, it dawned on me. The bitter aftertaste of another apple eaten thousands of years ago still sticks in our throats. We cannot escape our broken world. Sin clings to us no matter how hard we try to get rid of it. But absolution does come. The price for forgiveness has been paid. His love can transcend all barriers. It may take a long time; we may have to fly this little Cessna hundreds of times before we begin to make a lasting difference, but His love can reach all around our globe. The scale can be balanced one apple at a time.
I walked up to the two boys and beckoned them to look at me. They stopped quarreling and faced me. I could not speak their language and they were far too young to understand, even if I could. I wanted to give them the knowledge of Jesus but had no idea how to do so. I bent down to their level and started crying. I drew them close to me, one under each arm and hugged them. I was surprised when they hugged me back. Pretty soon all three of us were sobbing, a love and understanding transcending age, race, culture and financial status.
I reached into my bag and took out the last apple I had. I gave it to the boy who didn’t have one and smiled. They both smiled back at me, and for a moment, just a moment, humanity seemed at peace.
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