It’s the classic, slapstick, silent comedy film moment.
One man walking down the street eating a banana. He peels it, throws the skin (peel) over his shoulder. Second man walks along the street, steps on the banana skin and slips over. Laughter ensues, or not as the case may be.
I don’t know how realistic it is. I don’t know how fresh the skin has to be, or even if it is possible to slip on a banana skin. But, I do know, spiritually speaking, I have slipped on a few banana skins in my time.
Life seems to be progressing well. Family life, work life, walk with Jesus progressing nicely and then oops, there is a banana skin! The apostle Paul was right when he said;
If you think you are standing strong, be careful not to fall. (1 Corinthians 10 vs.12)
Our banana skins come in different forms.
Criticism, discouragement, loneliness, isolation, poor choices, loss of perspective
and so on and so on. If I am honest about it, the most embarrassing banana skins I slip on, are the ones that I have put in my own path!
So, we slip on the banana skin and, as we lay on the floor, we feel hurt and defeated we can find ourselves wondering “can I go on?” I would like to encourage you today – yes you can!
Here are some things you need to know
Know – there is a way back
I love the story of Jonah. There was a man who knew how to slip on a banana skin. He is called by God to go to Nineveh and so, he runs in the opposite direction. You may remember he ends up inside a big fish. Whilst he is in there he comes to his senses (for a short while at least) and realizes God will give him a new beginning
I said, ‘I have been banished
from your sight;
yet I will look again
toward your holy temple.’ (Jonah 2 vs. 4)
Know – this is not the end
Our banana skins do not represent the end of the line for us. God is a God of new hope. Even when our situations seem totally hopeless, God can do far more than we can imagine. Job was a man who slipped on a few banana skins and none of it was his fault! Even when his friends tried to help him, they end up supplying even more banana skins. He said this;
“At least there is hope for a tree: If it is cut down, it will sprout again, and its new shoots will not fail. (Job 14 vs. 7)
As Job was to discover, there was hope for him and, despite the banana skins, he found this was not the end, God did not give up on him or, let him down.
Know – who you are
When we hit the banana skin, we can end up feeling lost and confused and we may even think that we are of no use to God. Let me say this, God loves you because you are you and not because of what you or may not do for Him. You are His child and no matter what, He continues to love you;
So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, (Galatians 3 vs. 26)
The reality of life, for all of us, is that we will all slip on the odd banana skin along the way. However, I hope, the next time you slip you will remember it is not the end of the road for you. It is an opportunity to begin again.