Monday, October 31, 2011

This Little Light

Saturday morning started with the bubbly sounds of coffee percolating, the smell of freshly baked coffee cake, and the slimy squish of pumpkin guts.  Oh, and we were listening to Bobby "Boris" Pickett and the Cryptkickers sing, "The Monster Mash".  Awesome.

The past two years we have bucked tradition and opted to do all our pumpkin carving in the morning.  It's a whole lot more fun to be creative and slimy when the kids are rested and Mom and Dad have a healthy and renewed sense of humor!  As opposed to past years with nutty kids who can't force their worn-out minds make a decision ("a cat ... no, a cheerleader ... no, a butterfly ... no, a cat!"), little bodies that can't stop moving ("if I sit down, I might fall asleep"), Mommy snapping at all the helpful hands ("don't wipe your hands on my shirt ... gross ...") and Daddy holding his head with his clean hand ("this is fun because ...?).

Yes.  Our morning of pumpkin production is definitely more fun!

The kids are rather creative in their choices of images to carve into their pumpkins.  In fact this particular morning, Brett lamented, "what happened to just a face with circles and triangles?"  Sorry, Daddy, that's old school.

This year we have a football:

A giraffe:

 An owl:

A football:

A ghost:

And Frankenstein:

So fun!

Of course, this took some work ...

We cleared the table and benches out of the kitchen, spread newspaper across the tile and set to work.  I sketched the kids ideas on their pumpkins with a pencil while Brett began cutting the top off Norah's green pumpkin.  When I had finished cutting into the other four pumpkins and finished Lydia's giraffe pumpkin (completely) Brett was still working on the green beast.

Unbeknownst to us, this particular pumpkin is all flesh.  Three solid inches of flesh with the seed imbedded in the flesh.  No guts, no gunk, no slime ... just seed impacted flesh.  Brett cut and cut and cut (read sawed, hacked and slashed) the top of that pumpkin and could not get the "lid" to budge.  In the end, it required a screw driver and (I kid you not) a crowbar.

Then the true challenge began:  getting enough flesh carved out of the pumpkin so that we could cut out the eyes and stitches and find the Frankenstein within!  Armed with only my Pampered Chef melon baller, Brett went to work on scooping out the flesh.  I, on the other hand, carved a football and a cutie-patootie ghost.  (And Lydia pieced together her giraffe parts and rebuilt her pumpkin.  It kept her busy and happy!)

Eventually Brett managed to whittle down one side of the green pumpkin, enough that we would be able to etch out the character's iconic features.  He passed the little green monster on to me and went to work on Ashley's owl.  With a few quick cuts (following Norah's to-scale sketch as closely as possible) we were able to declare, "He's alive!  He's alive!"

Fast forward ten hours ...

We've wrapped a up a busy day.  Dinner dishes are washed.  The kids are in pajamas.  It's time to light our pumpkins.

Look at that sweet glow ...

Tiny little lights illuminate the creatures and creations we carved.

But .... but ... but ...

there would be no place for us to set our little candles if we hadn't first mucked out the insides - cut away the flesh and "the yuckies".  There would be no lights to be seen if we hadn't cut away what wasn't a giraffe or an owl or a ghost or a football or Frankenstein.  There would be no "oohs and aahs" if we hadn't take the time to decide and design what we wanted.

Only after the hard work of cleaning and scraping, cutting and carving, imagining and sketching do we stand back with a sense of pride and say, "There."

God is the same way.  Maybe you've read about the portrayal of God, the Potter, at work at His wheel working the clay that is our being.  He shapes and centers, He creates and designs.  We are the work of His hands.

What if He is also a Pumpkin Carver?  He takes our lives and cuts away the gunk and the yuck - cutting away the flesh that crowds our lives, leaving no room for Him.  He cleans out the slime and the slippery stuff that sticks to us - purifying us from the sins that cling.  He has a plan in mind and each cut is intended to make us into the creation He has designed - the masterpiece He imagined.  And when He's finished with us, He puts us out to be seen.  He puts His light in us, His Holy Spirit, and tells us to shine.

The purpose of this little light is to show the craftsmanship of the Carver ... and to bring Him pleasure!

6 For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made His light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.
 7 But we have this treasure in jars of clay (pumpkins) to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. (2 Corinthians 4:6-7, addition mine)

You are God's treasured pumpkin ... let your little light shine!


Well ... that's it ...  31 days of Mom in the Midst!  Part of me feels like, "Wow!  That was a lot of work having something fresh every day!", while another part of me feels like, "Oh.  It's done, huh. Hmm.", with one last part of me feeling like, "Well ... I still have more thoughts banging around in my head.  Guess I'll still have something to write about tomorrow!"

Thanks for reading along this month ... and coming back for more!

Day 6:  Me, Myself & I

1 comment:

  1. Great Pumpkins...and great new Halloween tradition. Love the Frankenstein!! Happy Halloween. It was fun seeing you at KidzPlex.


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