At a time when the agricultural economy of the South was suffering due to depleted soils and the boll weevil, scientist George Washington Carver introduced farmers to the idea of crop rotation. By planting peanuts and other legumes, nitrogen was put back into the soil, … but then warehouses were overflowing with rotting peanuts because supply was greater than the demand.
Taking inspiration from a verse in Job, this scientist asked God for answers and went to his lab to uncover the secrets of the lowly peanut. Beyond peanut butter, George Washington Carver eventually discovered over 300 uses for peanuts including various foods, beverages, oil, food for livestock, cosmetics, dyes and stains, medicines, axle grease, gasoline, insecticide, linoleum, ink, and laundry soap. But he didn’t stop there. He went on to find over 100 uses for sweet potatoes and over 75 uses for pecans.
Beyond the economic benefits back then, today peanut paste is the central ingredient in packets of ready to use therapeutic food used by many organizations to fight and cure malnutrition in third world countries. Peanuts are high in calories and full of protein, which support the immune system, and the combination of vitamins and minerals is easy to digest for shrunken, malnourished stomachs … making peanuts a life saving food.
“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 NIV)
Creation declares God’s boundless creativity and provision. After all, who else would of packed this much into a simple bumpy root crop?
What about you? Did you eat peanut butter sandwiches as a kid? Were you surprised by any of the uses for peanuts?