The Pineapple Story

This story is about victory when surrendering to God all our problems. It is a first-hand account from a missionary in New Guinea.

…So I stood in the garden one night. The people had gone home. I didn’t want them to see me out there praying. I prayed, “Lord, see these pineapple bushes? I have fought to have fruit from them. I have claimed them. I stood up for my rights. It is all wrong, and I realize it now. I have seen that it is wrong and I give them to You. From now on, if You want me to eat any of Your pineapples, fine. You just go right ahead and give them to us. If not, fine. It doesn’t really matter.”
So I gave them to God, and the natives stole the pineapples as usual. I thought to myself, “See, God, You can’t control them either.”

Then one day they came to me and said, “Too-wan, you have become a Christian, haven’t you?” I was ready to react and say, “Look here, I have been a Christian for twenty years.” But instead I said, “Why do you say that?” They said, “Because you don’t get angry anymore when we steal your pineapples.” This was a real revelation. Now I was living what I had been preaching to them. I had been telling them to love one another, be kind to one another, and I had always been standing up for my rights, and they knew it.

Finally, one bright lad started thinking and said, “Now, why don’t you get angry anymore?” I said, “I have given that garden away. It isn’t my garden anymore. So you are not stealing my pineapples. I don’t have to get angry anymore.” Another guy started to think even more and he said, “Who did you give that garden to?” They looked around. “Did he give it to you?” “Did he give it to you?” “Whose is it anyway?” “Whose pineapples are we stealing?”

Then I said, “I have given the garden to God.” They said, “To God?! Hasn’t He got any pineapples where He is?” I said, “I don’t know whether He has or not, but I have given it to God.” They went to the village and said, “Do you know whose pineapples we are stealing? Too-wan has given them to God.” They all started thinking about that one. They came back in a group and said, “Too-wan, you should not have done it. Why don’t you get them back from God? No wonder we aren’t getting the pigs when we go out hunting. No wonder our babies are getting sick. No wonder our wives are not giving birth. No wonder the fish aren’t biting.” Then they said, “We shouldn’t steal them anymore if they are God’s, should we?”

They were afraid of God. So then the pineapples began to ripen. The natives came and said, “Too-wan, your pineapples are ripe.” I said, “They are not mine. They belong to God.” They said, “But they are going to get rotten. You had better pick them.” And so, I got some and I let the natives take some. When my family sat down to eat them, I said, “Lord, we are eating Your pineapples. Thank You for giving them to us.” All those years those natives were watching me and listening to my words. They saw that the two didn’t match. But when I began to change, they did too. Soon many natives decided to become Christians… ”

2 Timothy 2:24-26
And the Lord’s servant must not quarrel; instead, he must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. Those who oppose him he must gently instruct, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will.

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4 responses to “The Pineapple Story

  1. K

    I first heard this wonderful story from Pastor Steve Nash in New Jersey. I enjoyed reading it again. Thank you for posting 🙂

    • Hi K,
      A brother at my church had just sent us a link to a list of this missionary’s stories. This missionary’s name, I just found out, is Brother Otto Koning.

      I look forward to hearing them all in the near future.

  2. KTM-P

    Such a wonderful true story! We use this book to teach our students both English and good character development in our reading class.

  3. New Horizons

    I remember reading this story as a child. I recently have had frustrating situations concerning people I have been trying to help for years. I was beginning to feel like a victim, like I was being used for being a “christian”. After re-reading this story I am reminded that all we possess is on loan from God. We are meant to be caretakers, not owners.

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