Although traditional pumpkin carving is associated with Halloween, this object lesson is all about the Light – how Jesus changes us from the inside out. Use this Pumpkin Gospel to grow your family’s faith each harvest season, and plant the gospel in their hearts with this meaningful activity!
Our favorite book to read while carving pumpkins is “The Pumpkin Patch Parable” by Liz Curtis Higgs.
About the Book
Bestselling author Liz Curtis Higgs shares God’s love and redemption with this beautiful fall story about a farmer who turns a simple pumpkin into a bright light that brings joy. Help your children understand how God makes us into new creations with this simple story that won the Gold Medallion Award for Best Christian Book of the Year.
The Pumpkin Patch Parable
- teaches kids how God’s love changes our hearts with a sweet story they can understand
- turns family or Sunday School storytime into a faith-growing discussion
- includes scriptures on each page that tie the story to the Good News of the Bible
- shows the stages of a pumpkin plant growing from a small seed into a huge fruit
- makes a cheerful addition to any alternative Halloween or Thanksgiving celebration
Liz Curtis Higgs created this parable storybook as a way to share the gospel with her own precious children each harvest season . . . and now with children everywhere.
See that big red barn? And those rolling green fields? That’s where the farmer lives, w-a-a-a-y out in the country. it’s so far out the streets don’t even have stop signs.
The farmer grows lots of different things in those fields. He grows tall green corn and big red tomatoes… long yellow squash and little green peas. People eat that stuff for dinner.
“I am the true vine; my Father is the gardener.John 15:1
The BEST vegetables the farmer grows are PUMPKINS! They start out as flat, oval seeds, almost as big as raisins.
“The kingdom of heaven is like a man who planted good seed in his field.Matthew 13:24
One hot June day, soon after school let out, the farmer planted pumpkin seeds, just like he did every Summer.
The seeds disappeared into the ground in nice neat rows and grew there in the dark, all through the Fourth of July.
This is what the story means: The seed is God’s teaching.Luke 8:11
Early one morning, a tiny green shoot quietly poked its way out of the soil. Soon, a long, green vine stretched across the ground. From that vine, little buds sprouted into wide green leaves.
The leaves spread out flat to catch the August sun.
Someday, those little green buds would turn into big orange pumpkins!
But not yet. The patient farmer waited. And waited.
The Lord is not slow in doing what he promised—the way some people understand slowness. But God is being patient with you. He does not want anyone to be lost. He wants everyone to change his heart and life.2 Peter 3:9
The pumpkins began to grow. How different they looked!
Some were tall and lean.
Some were short and round.
Some had lumps and bumps.
ALL of them were pumpkins!
My hand made all things.
All things are here because I made themIsaiah 66:2
October came at last. The sky was bright blue and the air was cooler. Every night it got dark earlier than it did the night before. It was time for the farmer to harvest his pumpkin crop.
The farmer’s many workers brought lots of ripe pumpkins in from the fields. Which one would he choose first?
Open your eyes. Look at the fields that are ready for harvesting now.John 4:35
The farmer picked up one large pumpkin, being v-e-r-y careful not to let it slip through his hands. Pumpkins are tough on the outside, but break into smithereens if you drop them! He washed off all the dirt, holding on tight.
Now, why wait any longer? Get up, be baptized, and wash your sins away. Do this, trusting in him to save you.acts 22:16
Next came the messy part.
Pumpkins are full of dozens of seeds and lots of slimy pulp. The farmer had a special plan for his chosen pumpkin, so the seeds and the slime had to go.
Create in me a pure heart, GodPsalm 51:10
He slowly slid a large knife right into the center of the pumpkin.
The pumpkin didn’t make a sound, because vegetables don’t talk. If they did talk, the pumpkin might have said, “ouch!”
God’s word is alive and working. It is sharper than a sword sharpened on both sides. It cuts all the way into us, where the soul and the spirit are joined. It cuts to the center of our joints and our bones. And God’s word judges the thoughts and feelings in our hearts.Hebrews 4:12
Gently, the farmer cut a round hole in the top of the pumpkin and pulled on the stem.
Squishy, stringy pulp waited for him inside… YUCK!
I am the Lord, and I can look into a person’s heart.Jeremiah 17:10
The farmer pulled out all the slimy pulp and wrapped it up in an old newspaper. Off to the compost pile, it went, never to be seen again.
He has taken our sins away from us
as far as the east is from west.Psalm 103:12
Then, something REALLY exciting happened: The pumpkin got a new face!
We all show the Lord’s glory, and we are being changed to be like him. This change in us brings more and more glory. And it comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.2 Corinthians 3:18
The farmer carved a triangle for each eye.
Pumpkins have eyes that don’t blink or turn away. They see everything!
The eye is a light for the body. If your eyes are good, then your whole body will be full of light.Matthew 6:22
He neatly carved
a little square for a nose,
and then a big, w-i-d-e smile.
Happiness makes a person smile.
But sadness breaks a person’s spirit.proverbs 15:13
What happened next was wonderful.
The farmer put a small, white candle down inside the pumpkin and touched the wick with a flame.
How that pumpkin glowed!
Let the light shine out of the darkness!” And this is the same God who made his light shine in our hearts. He gave us light by letting us know the glory of God that is in the face of Christ.2 Corinthians 4:6
As the sky grew darker, the pumpkin on the porch was shining brighter than ever.
When people saw the smiling pumpkin, they smiled back!
All the neighbors knew that, once again, the farmer had turned a simple pumpkin into a simply glorious sight.
In the same way, God the Father offers his children the chance to be made new, full of joy and full of light, shining like stars in a dark world.
If anyone belongs to Christ, then he is made new. The old things have gone; everything is made new!2 Corinthians 5:17
Religion vs. Relationship Pumpkin Gospel Alternate
In an alternate version of the Pumpkin Gospel, you can also demonstrate the difference between being saved by grace and trying to “earn” salvation through works. All you will need is a second pumpkin with a face that is painted on (rather than cut out). THIS pumpkin is wanting to be “chosen,” but it’s not allowing the Gardener to clean out the inside.
So, the pumpkin wears a painted face (tries to make itself acceptable on the outside), but inside – it’s still full of yucky goo. Without removing the goo, there’s no room for the Gardener’s light, so the pumpkin cannot shine.
Many people try to make themselves acceptable to God in their own way (just like Adam and Eve in the Garden). They might go to church and act like Christians, and they might even believe in God … but unless they trust that Jesus paid the price for their sins, then the sin remains on the inside. They cannot become new creatures without allowing Christ to remove their sin. So, the light of Christ cannot be in them.
I mean that you have been saved by grace because you believe. You did not save yourselves. It was a gift from God. You cannot brag that you are saved by the work you have done. God has made us what we are. In Christ Jesus, God made us new people so that we would do good works. God had planned in advance those good works for us. He had planned for us to live our lives doing them.Ephesians 2:8-10
We Baked our Seeds in the Air Fryer
350 for 15 minutes. We used butter, cinnamon, and sugar.