Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Pleasantly Pumpkin

This morning, I was able to attend my daughter Chloe's Kindergarten field trip to a local pumpkin patch.  While on the trip, her teacher was looking for a pumpkin flower.  The class recently discussed how pumpkins grew from a flower on a vine into the big, round orange pumpkins that we pick up and use for carving jack-o-lanterns.  It occured to me as the teacher located a beautiful pumpkin vine and flower, cut it off and showed it to all of the children, that our path, as God's children, begins and ends much like that of a pumpkin's path to our carving table or porch decor.

You see, pumpkins start from just one, relatively small, seed that is planted.  It's nurtured and taken care of - fertilized (fed) and watered.  The pumpkin fields are tended and looked after, protected during storms and weather fluctuations. The fields are treated to fend off infestations all things that would attempt to damage the crop.  When the pumpkins are riped, they're laid out for selection by the yearly hayrack rides full of pumpkin pickers.

We, too, start out as a very humble little being.  As a child, we're planted, loved and cared for, protected from fluctuations of our world and given resistance to the infestations of the day.  We start out as an innocent little flower, but as we grow, we change.  We learn new things and experience struggles in life.  The weather changes and storms come.  We see our friends change and we recognize opportunities.  Our blooms change from a flower to a little pumpkin bud and grows into the variety of life that we see everytime we look around at the people in our lives.

As we walked through the pumpkin patch, I saw that some of the pumpkins were large, others were small.  Funny. People are that way too.  I saw that some pumpkins were bright orange all over, but others were moddled with green and yellow.  Some were broken and rotted out.  Some had dimples and holes.  Funny, people look uniquely different, too.  Some had one good side and one bad side.  Funny, people carry two personas, too.  Hmmmm.

I also noticed that some of the pumpkins were still attached to their life-giving vine, while others had fallen off on their own and others were cut away.  People, too, have a life-giving vine and our attachment to this Vine varies.  We can be cut away from God, completely, in our minds and hearts.  We can be hanging on with one little strand to God, trying to fend off the challenges and temptations we face, or we can be clinging to God with every fiber of our being and still relying on Him for every breath of our life, each and every day.

God's majesty really is amazing, isn't it?  He can turn that tiny little pumpkin seed into a big, glorious pumpkin!  That's remarkable, in the true sense of the word. God can, however, keep his majesty rather simple.  The transformation is a process, for everyone.  We're growing each day and with each new chance.  God allows our vines to twist and turn and sometimes break, but he always give us a chance at life.  Every single pumpkin in that field, at one time, had a chance to be picked.  The variations of color could all be combined to form a beautiful centerpiece, or a fantastic and whimsical decoration. The bumps and bruises on the guords give them character.  The variation of sizes and colors make each pumpkin truly unique.  And, have you ever noticed how hard is to find that perfect pumpkin. You just can't do it.  Perfection does not exist in the pumpkin patch or in us.  It's just not there, and, that's okay!

Take some time today to thank God for his simple majesty.  Thank Him for the process we go through and thank Him for the opportunities each day that we have to reach out for His life-granting blessings.  Thank God for making you, YOU - unique and beautiful to the One who picks you from the patch, every single time! 

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