- "The Pumpkin Patch Parable," which focuses on the harvest season and shows that we can let God’s love shine through us
- "The Pine Tree Parable," a heartwarming tale of the farmer and his family, who nurture tiny seedlings into fragrant Christmas trees.
- "The Parable of the Lily," which helps children understand the power of grace and forgiveness and the true meaning of Easter.
- "The Sunflower Parable," which helps children discover the value of planting seeds, not only in the ground but also in the hearts of those around us.
My thoughts: While this is an absolutely adorable book of four stories – one for each season, and while it is a collection of stories that are well done and make for good read-aloud stories for the kiddies, there are a couple of issues that I find disturbing.
- The Spring story is about a lily. This is a gift from the farmer (who in the parable represents the giver of all good gifts – God) but it is not a good-to-look-at gift. It is a box of dirt containing a bulb. At one point in the story the child is disturbed and throws the bulb out the window. It lands in the farmer’s flower bed. Then behold, on Easter, there is a beautiful lily. Now why would I object to this? The truth is handled loosely here. Lilies – specifically Easter Lilies – despite their “name” do not bloom in a garden on Easter.
- The other issue is in regard to the Fall story about the pumpkin seed being planted in the ground, growing, being harvested. Then the farmer (again a representative in the story/parable of the giver of gifts, the molder of lives, etc.) cleanses the soiled pumpkin, cuts the top off, scrapes out the insides and tosses them away “never to be seen again” (picture of sin?). Then the farmer skillfully carves a beautiful smiling face into the pumpkin and inserts a light which shines forth for all to see (depicting a cleansed, redeemed individual's light shining forth). While the imagery is nice, the use of a Jack-O-Lantern, which is a totally Halloween symbol, is inappropriate in any Christian work. I realize the author has stated it was not meant to celebrate Halloween.
DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy to facilitate this review. Opinions are my own. I was not compensated for this review.