Homework in the Cocoa Beans

boy in white crew neck t shirt holding chocolate jar
Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

Sometimes I watch a show called Food Factory. The show demonstrates how foods are made – everything from Worcestershire sauce to ice cream cakes.

Recently I watched an episode about a unique candy bar. The chocolate is unique because (as the manager told us) everything is made from scratch. In fact the cocoa beans themselves are purchased in raw form on the free market from Africa or South America. (Unlike most factories that simply purchase the beans here in the US.)

The beans arrive at the factory in burlap bags and are dumped into large vats where employees sort through them to find beans that can’t be used for one reason or another. The beans are the shape of small pebbles and thousands of them end up in each container.

The narrator asked the manager if they have ever found anything strange in the vats. He smiled and I was expecting him to say they’ve found a nest of spiders or the remains of some African mammal.

But no, he said, “Once we found a kid’s homework.”

I laughed. Can you imagine that kid giving his teacher an excuse, “No, Sir, I don’t have my homework. I lost it in a bag of free trade cocoa beans and it’s now on its way to the United States.”

Now THAT would be quite an excuse and no, I have no idea how homework ended up in the cocoa beans.

People have always had excuses. (Like the lady who told Ken she couldn’t make it to church because her fingernail polish hadn’t dried.)

God is used to excuses. The Apostle Paul wrote that God’s wrath is on people who ignore the truth and turn to evil. We have a clear picture of the truth through  God’s power and His nature. We can see evidence of truth all round us.

We have NO excuse

For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse. (Romans 1:20)

Yet so many people today come up with excuses – “God is out-of-date, the Bible doesn’t make sense, I can’t believe in God when there’s so much evil in the world.”

They throw out their excuses without even making an attempt to understand His Word and the world around them.

We need to teach out kids that there are NO excuses. We need to help them comprehend the power and divine nature of God.

That’s part of our job as teachers and parents.

And we also need to help them keep their homework out of the cocoa beans.

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