In a far away small town lived a certain mango tree. She was such a beautiful tree that had supplied such sweet mangoes for over twenty different mango seasons running. Everyone knew the mango tree for her juicy fruits not to mention her sweetly unique taste that no other mango tree ever seemed to match. The school children could always never wait to close from school and pelt stones at her fruits in order to disconnect them from their branches even as gravity completed the rest of the job by bringing down the fruits. 


One day the disgruntled mango tree decided to hold a pity party after such heavy stone pelting episode from about twenty school children who managed to get all the ripped fruits from the tree. During the pity party she started to consider everything negative starting with how everyone never ever said hello each time they passed by. She also realized that no one ever said thank you after taking the fruits. What surprised her was the stone pelting session from the school children. She lamented, "Like seriously all I get for making people satisfied and happy is to be stoned? This world is truly wicked." She started thinking about all those who always passed by and admired her beauty and never gave her anything. "This world is unfair, I need to take a drastic decision. People must respect me, I am not a fool to be taken for granted"


So the mango tree decided to take a major action step to demonstrate her seriousness to punish all those who took her for granted. She resolved and therefore convinced a mason to build a thick concrete wall around her and a canopy that even covered her at the top. After the full construction of the wall and canopy, she smiled and said, "Surely none of those school children will get access to my fruits anymore and those people who just pass by to admire my beauty with no other gifts to say thank you will have nothing to behold". The mason knew that the consequence of building the wall was dire for the mango tree and tried to convince her out of it but the tree was so bent on revenge she had no time to think about what she could lose in turn.


The day the wall was completed the mango tree was so happy with the mason that she paid with her choice mangoes. She left a small hole from where she could peep and see the misery of those who had made plans with her in mind. The first day was such a joy laughing the whole day at the school children who even climbed to the top of the wall for access to the choice mangoes but could find no way to penetrate the impregnable wall and canopy. She could also see tired people who usually rested under her shade for a while before continuing their journey so frustrated and sweaty from the scorching sun. "Surely they must be missing me now and realizing perhaps for the first time how much value I bring to the table", the tree jeered.


Her many days of laughing were surprisingly short lived as they were soon replaced with something she had never experienced before. It was a thick gloom of sadness that made her so depressed crying uncontrollably day in day out. She sobbed, "are these not supposed to be my best days on earth? I've cut everyone out and I have the whole world to myself, why am I not happy? I want to die now!!


One day as she cried she began to think deeper and realized that she had blocked access to sunshine which she used to not only cheer up but also cook her food. Her food had been cold these days because she had no sun. The many mangoes on her branches weighed her down with tiredness. She suddenly realized that she missed the great sense of fulfillment that she had each time she saw the school children excited at eating the mangoes. She was shocked to also find out that because no stones were pelted at her her branches had grown weak from lack of exercise. 


She also now began to see how much she not only needed those who took from her but also needed those who gave to her. "The soil has been so kind offering me a home with no rent charges for decades as well as food supplies for free. I seem to have also taken the cheer and light from the sun for granted", reasoned the tree. She suddenly became aware of how much she was also dependent on others. She knew many of her tree friends who also took from the sun and soil without saying thank you.  Suddenly the realization of her own selfishness dawned on her. "I have been so selfish that I thought I was the only one who had it all."


Early the next day she called for mason to organize a demolition exercise right away to crush the wall into powder. "I was made to bring nourishment, sweetness, shade, beauty and satisfaction into this world, the day I stop doing this, I will die even though I may look alive" she shouted in joy.


The Bible has says in Philippians 2:3-5 (ISV) that:


Do not act out of selfish ambition or conceit, but with humility think of others as being better than yourselves. Do not be concerned about your own interests, but also be concerned about the interests of others. Have the same attitude among yourselves that was also in the Messiah Jesus;


Are you the teacher who is thinking that bankers are getting all the money whilst you spend all your energy just teaching children with no reward? Or are you a wife withholding sex from your husband thinking that he gets to be the only one to enjoy? Or you are the Lead singer at church who thinks there should be a thanksgiving service organized in your honour because you are the only one who leads the entire church to worship effectively? Or you are the husband who thinks that your wife is taking your love and attention for granted so you have decided to give her a cold treatment? The list goes on.


Well no matter what the situation may be, we must remember that just like a mango cannot eat its own fruit, so are we also made to depend on others. We need each other to survive. When we all wake up each morning, we should just decide to be a blessing to a world that owes us nothing and because we are solutions we should just solve the problems we were created to solve.


You can never eat your own fruit so give freely and be fulfilled!!


K.K. Baidoo