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A couple of days ago, I fixed Chloe and Cole lunch. They ate it all, which was a good bit of food.
After she was done, Chloe asked me for a banana. "Do you want half of a banana, or a whole one?" I asked her.
"A whole one."
I tried to talk her out of it. "Are you sure you can eat a whole banana? You ate a pretty big meal. How about half of one?"
"I want a whole one!"
Against my better judgment, I gave her a whole banana.
For the next 10 minutes, I watched her carry that banana around the house, nibbling on it bit by bit. Fearing that she would eventually smear it all over the couch cushions - or the dog - I told her she needed to finish it up.
"I don't want it," she said and headed for the trash can. Just as she was about to drop it in, I stopped her. I took the banana and cut off the part that was peeled, effectively saving half the banana for later.
Bothered by her wasteful actions I turned to Chloe and said, "I told you half a banana was enough, but you insisted on having a whole one. Now you've only eaten half of it, and was about to throw the other half in the trash." Then I said the words before I could stop myself. "What's the matter, Chloe? Do you think bananas grow on trees?"
Yes, the encyclopedia assures me that bananas do, in fact, grow on trees. But other things do not. Other things that we tend to waste all too easily. Time. Money. Relationships. Opportunities.
What can we do to keep from being so wasteful? I think I've found the answer in Psalm 37:5. In the first part of that verse we're told, "Commit your way to the Lord."
If I commit my way to the Lord, that means I'm going to do the things he wants me to do, and not do the things he doesn't want me to do. I'm going to make the most of every opportunity. I'm going to make the most of every relationship. I'm going to spend my time and money on things that are pleasing to my heavenly father, not on what is necessarily pleasing to me.
When I commit my way to the Lord and act accordingly, I'm also going to see a drastic decrease in the amount of waste in my life.
Do you have any waste in your life? Have you committed your way to the Lord? Why not try it and see the difference it makes?
Parrish Myers is pastor of Pine Crest Baptist Church in Gainesville. His column runs every other week in Sunday Life.