[forthright] Watermelons and Other Good Stuff

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From: Forthright Magazine <forthrightmag@...>
Date: Sat, 12 Jul 2008 08:38:21 -0700 (PDT)
Forthright Magazine
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COLUMN: FIELD NOTES

Watermelons and Other Good Stuff
 by Michael E. Brooks

"We remember the fish which we ate freely in Egypt, the
cucumbers, the melons, the leeks, the onions, and the
garlic" (Numbers 11:5, NKJV).

My wife loves watermelon. This spring in Bangladesh she
started asking the cook staff at Khulna Bible College
"Did you see any watermelons at the market today?" at
least a month early. When they finally started to show
up she made sure some were brought to campus very
quickly. Once she was certain that good quality melons
were readily available, she arranged for a supply large
enough to feed everyone there, staff, faculty,
students, children – everybody. Not surprisingly, all
were very happy to receive their share of the treat.

Watermelons are a rather special, almost unique, item.
There is much good, and very little negative which one
may say about them. Almost everyone likes the taste,
and even those of us to whom they are not particularly
special, can eat and enjoy them a little bit,
occasionally.

There is nothing harmful about melons, at least to my
knowledge. I cannot imagine anyone eating enough of
them to do any real harm. People of every age, race,
nationality and social class enjoy their flavor. They
seem to be available almost everywhere, and though they
may be somewhat expensive, their large size makes them
a relative bargain in almost any economy. Additionally,
with their smooth green skin, red interior and dark
seeds, they are very pretty. What is not to like?

Perhaps we need more watermelons in all aspects of life.
Not the big fruits, of course, but rather people,
institutions, philosophies and activities which share
these qualities. They are not the sweetest food on
the menu, nor the richest, nor most filling, nor the
one with the strongest taste. But they are pleasant,
healthy, and satisfying.The Bible describes some
people like that.

I think of Andrew, for example. He was not the
largest or most flamboyant of the Apostles. He was
not the most impulsive, nor the best speaker, nor
the one with the most dominant personality. He was
not the closest personally to Jesus. Yet he
brought others to faith in Christ (John 1:35-42),
and it was Andrew who located the five loaves and
two fish with which Jesus fed thousands
(John 6:8-10). Andrew did good, not harm. He caused
no conflicts. We need more Andrews.

Another person with a "watermelon" character was
Tabitha, also called Dorcas (Acts 9:36-42) whom Peter
raised from the dead at Joppa. Tabitha was known and
loved for her good works by which she helped others.
Tabitha was not an apostle, a missionary or a fiery
evangelist. She did not serve the church as an elder,
and there is no record of her speaking in prophesy
or possessing miraculous gifts. She simply did good.
When she died, she was greatly missed and longed for.
We need more Tabithas.

The Bible teaches that all have received gifts, and
therefore have the ability to glorify God by helping
others (Ephesians 4:11-16; Romans 12:3-8). We are all
capable of doing good. Let us resolve to be known for
the good we do, the pleasure we bring, and the
harmlessness of our nature. Let us be like
watermelons.

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