|The Great Pumpkin shows us 4 ways to protect our hearts from deception|
by Barbara Latta
Poor Linus. Every year he sits shivering in the cold waiting for the Great Pumpkin.
At Christmas, Linus has some great wisdom. When asked what Christmas was all about, he recited the scriptures from the book of Luke. But when it came to Halloween, his grasp of the truth was misdirected.
What can this adorable cartoon character show us about ourselves? We can learn how easy it is to be deceived into believing a lie.
All Linus’ friends tried to convince him there was no Great Pumpkin. But Linus was determined to live by this concoction of his own imagination.
It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown TV show can show us 4 ways to protect our hearts from deception.
1. No matter what we hear or where the words come from, we are instructed to look for evidence of truth. Linus believed a fable he had heard instead of investigating the source of the story.
Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God; every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God. (1 John 4:1-2 NKJV)
2. We shouldn’t be influenced by another person’s opinion simply because we love them. Poor Sally’s crush on Linus drove her to spend several cold hours hiding in the pumpkin vines waiting for the manifestation of something that wasn’t real.
Do not be deceived: Evil company corrupts good habits. Awake to righteousness, and do not sin; for some do not have the knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame. (1 Corinthians 15:33-34)
Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness? (2 Corinthians 6:14)
3. We should keep a sensitive heart and be willing to let the Word of God illuminate us.
Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. (Psalm 19:105)
Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life. (Proverbs 4:23)
4. We shouldn’t take offense against those who try to tell us the truth. Linus’s sister, Lucy, acted tough against her brother at times, but when he was in trouble she came to his rescue. Linus allowed Lucy to take him out of the cold and put him to bed. He partook of the candy she collected for him.
Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do (Colossians 3:12-13).
Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. (Luke 6:37)
We can perceive a lot from Linus’ travail waiting for the non-existent Great Pumpkin. I don’t think the big, orange orb will show up this year either. But if Linus didn’t learn his lesson, hopefully we can.
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