Tuesday, March 23, 2010

A King, I See ... An O.K. Potato - Black

Palm Sunday, Good Friday, and Easter are drawing near, so I decided to reach back into my files and share two items, which between them will bear some relation to each of those commemorative events of great significance to Christians.

The first, a short poem, was written in 1977 to accompany a Palm Sunday message.

A King, I See

Not in chariot of glass or gold,
But a King on a donkey, do I behold.

Clothed not in robes which sovereigns wear,
But stripped of all, my sins to bear.

Seated not on throne, I see,
But hanging on a Cross for me.

© Peter A. Black, 1977.


The following short story was written as an illustrative scenario to accompany an Easter Sunday morning sermon.

An O.K. Potato

It was an O.K. potato – nicely shaped, and with no ugly blemishes, and sat in the bag along with others – many of them quite huge. Day by day, a hand reached into that bag and drew out some potatoes.

First, was french-fry day. And so, the hand reached in a number of times and felt about, each time withdrawing a large potato – ideal for slicing up for fries.

Next, was baked potato day, and again, the hand reached in and fished around for the large tubers. More than once, the hand grasped the smallish-sized one but rejected it, letting it go.

Then came mashed potato day – offering another chance that that good, ordinary, and O.K. potato would hopefully get to fulfil its culinary and gastronomical destiny. But again, it was passed by, and before long, that perfectly good and wholesome potato wound up at the bottom of the bag. Eventually, it was the only one left, apart from a couple of ugly-shaped spuds, and one that had gone mushy and bad – and boy, did it stink!

However, that nice little potato had sprouted, and the lady of the house decided to plant it in the garden. It took root in the fertile soil, and quite some months later, the shaw was dug up, and there was a whole family of healthy brand-new potatoes where that one had been planted. But, there was also a rotting, shrivelled up dead potato. It was the original, and had effectively given its life. It was now dead. The new batch of potatoes represented new life, and was like a resurrection coming out of the death of the old.

That’s how it is with all kinds of seeds in the realm of nature. And Jesus said that’s how it is in the spiritual realm of God’s Kingdom (John 12:23-24). That’s how Paul said it would be in the resurrection. What is sown is not exactly the same as that which is raised. What is raised has similarities, but is distinct (1 Cor 15:37-38, 42-43).


© Peter A. Black, 2004/ 2010

2 Cor. 5:17 (NRSV) So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new!

May every blessing be yours and of those you love throughout this wonderful season.

Peter writes a weekly column in The Watford Guide-Advocate.
His book, "Parables from the Pond" is published by Word Alive Press.


Dolores Ayotte said...

Hi Peter,
I loved your poem. I can see it was written many years ago but the message remains the same.

The story of the O.K. Potato is very fitting at this time of the year when the season of "new life" is upon us! :)

Peter Black said...

Thanks, Dolores.
I may present the poem along with several short items in my talk at the Rotary tonight.
I occasionally write freeverse, but am most comfortable with rhythm and rhyme.

Glynis said...

I love rhythm and rhyme, too, Peter. It stirs my senses and I hear the message so well when it is well done (like yours!)
And...I will never look at a potato the same way again. A lovely analogy of sacrifice and new life. This reminds me of a sketch I wrote a while ago for a ladies' ministry - How Do You Like Your Potatoes? I must dig (pardon the pun) that out. Thanks for the prod and thanks for this thought-provoking post!

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