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Learning from a Gourd

Learning from a Gourd
By Ben Lane

I have always loved pumpkins. I think we can all agree the pumpkin is a pretty cool gourd.

People pay money just to go to a pumpkin patch, then pay more money to take one home. A recent trend has been to put your little pumpkins (children) next to actual pumpkins and take their pictures together.

Pumpkins are really versatile as well. Their colors vary in shades of orange, green, white, and yellow. You can display them as they are, or carve them up and make them look even more fun. (Regardless of your sentiments toward Halloween, let’s meet at this place. If you need to take a moment to concede the fact that jack-o-lanterns look fun, take your time. Have you done that yet? Yes? Then proceed.)

Back to Pumpkins, have you ever seen a child not enjoy extracting their guts? And then there is the fact those guts can be eaten. Admittedly, you have to smother the concoction in whipped cream until the orange pie part is not visible. But the fact remains that it is edible. Undoubtedly, they are a staple of the harvest season.

Allow me a few observations about our relationship with our pumpkin friends in regard to biblical matters.

We begin to see pumpkins in autumn. Autumn is oftentimes referred to as fall. Things are falling; things are dying. The season should remind us of our fall. We fell; we died in the garden (Romans 5:12).

The pumpkin can remind us that there is beauty in the midst of fall. It is a picture of a harvest in the midst of the fall. Even during the curses of the fall in Genesis 3, God gave a beautiful promise in verse 15 of the seed of the woman. The Lord will supplant the seed and when the right time comes (Galatians 4:4) we will experience God’s bounty.

I’m no botanist, but pumpkins mature from a flower. That makes pumpkins a fruit. The Lord has determined that his people will be fruitful. If we abide in him, the true vine, we will bear much fruit. Planting the imperishable seed of the gospel into our hearts will yield a harvest. The good work He began in us, He will see to completion. Our fruit will consist of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

The Lord has intended that there will be a harvest. He has set from eternity past the plan of salvation. He told His disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest” (Luke 10:2).

As we see the workmanship of people in a jack-o-lantern, let us be reminded that we are God’s workmanship. When we set a candle in the pumpkin it displays our creation. He has taken us, recreated us, and set His light in us. He has made us to be His poiema, His poem, or masterpiece. He puts us on display. When we walk in Christ, people will recognize the divine work going on in our souls. We are to be a light on a lampstand so that people may see God’s good work in us and glorify our Father in heaven.

All analogies break down. Like a pumpkin, this is not bulletproof. My intention is to help us view this common, boring item that will be everywhere for the next few weeks in a way that will help us meditate on Christ.

Have you been recreated into God’s masterpiece? That is subjective to whether you have had the imperishable seed of the gospel of Christ planted in your life. Jesus lived the most abundantly fruitful life. He fulfilled what God intended with His life of perfection. You won’t find a flawless pumpkin, but you will find a flawless Saviour in Jesus. Jesus not only lived a perfect life, but God smashed Him in our place. Jesus was crushed under the wrath of God that our sin deserved so that we may be saved. In the midst of death, there was a harvest. Jesus is the first fruits from among the grave. This means there will be many more!

If you will truly trust in Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection then you will experience eternal life. You will be a part of an incredible harvest. You will be an incredible masterpiece of grace pointing to the greatest masterpiece of all, Christ Jesus. Then you too can be a worker in the harvest and see many more come from death to life!

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