Many Christians are spooked by the thought of celebrating Halloween. Others fear not as the ghostly date arrives and embrace the dark thrill of the night. I’ve personally been on both sides of the creaking fence and have heard Christian arguments both for and against participating in this the creepiest of holidays.
As a child, my parents took us out every Halloween- it was so much fun figuring out costumes, getting all dressed up, crunching through leaves with friends, checking out the cool decorations and clawing in as much candy as possible! Of course Halloween had a different complexion back in the 60s, but even then some Christians preferred to remain still in the darkness of their domains to lighting up a porch full of goblins chanting trick or treat on All Saints Eve.
I guess my own fun childhood memories crept into my adult years, and even after becoming a born-again Christian at 29, I found myself at the front door of my own house all dressed up blissfully passing out treats every Halloween. As the years went by, however, celebrating became more and more “uncomfortable” for me, like putting on a costume that didn’t fit. Perhaps it was because I was growing in Christ, studying the Bible and developing increasing relationships with fellow Christians. The issue was all the more daunting when my own two little goblins were unearthed! 😉 Now haunted by the impending event, I recall recoiling inside while my husband, unhaunted and not wanting our young sons to miss out, continued to escort them into the unholy night. But things changed.
I do believe it was the Holy Spirit Who shined His Light into my zombie-like participation in Halloween, and later into my husband’s. God redirected our steps as we began whisking away with the boys on Fright Night, and for years clenched a replacement of fearless fun like the movies, bowling or the arcade. Then a few years ago, it happened again. Something began to feel uncomfortable to me- the idea of fleeing from this night wasn’t fitting well anymore. As a Christian, I knew we are not to conform to the pattern of this world, but to be transformed by the renewing of our minds. We are to fear the Lord and to shun evil. I knew the chain of reasons not to mindlessly participate in Halloween. But I had been Enlightened, and my heart was being nudged to the possibility of being a Light in the Darkness. Instead of thinking about all the evil PARTS of the holiday, its pagan origins, etc. as reasons for me to VANISH, I was now unable to stop thinking about all the PEOPLE crunching through the leaves and all the reasons I should be very much PRESENT. Unwittingly, I was embracing the mindset of my enchanting late Mom who repeatedly used to pronounce: “People are more important than things.” Indeed, every single soul is important to God.
Today, I find myself boldly perched atop the creaking fence, my Light on its Rightful Lampstand. My boys are older now, but I DELIGHT in the arrival of Halloween! Not because I embrace its pagan origins or am enchanted by its wicked themes, and not because I’m going to dress them up and crunch through the night for candy. I DELIGHT IN THE HOLY OPPORTUNITY TO TELL OTHERS THE GREATEST NEWS OF ALL- THE LIFESAVING GOSPEL OF THE GRACE OF GOD THROUGH CHRIST JESUS- HALLOWED BE THY MOST HOLY NAME!
You may or may not be spooked by Halloween, but if you dare come to my house, you can be sure I and my family will be cheerfully present flesh and blood, and you and your family will find pleasant decorations and pots of the most heavenly treats set out for your personal picking! But the BEST THING you will find is GOD’S SAVING LOVE IN CHRIST- Compact Bibles and Christian Devotionals ready to scoop up and a family unafraid to share God’s Love in the darkest of nights where Light, after all, shines brightest!
“The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” -John 1:5
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