24.10.17

Christian Halloween Alternatives Offer a Golden Time to Shine

by Sally Matheny

(Dreams of the ultimate mother-load of candy.)
    

Children's eyes dilate and their palms sweat with anticipation this time of year. Dreams of the ultimate, motherload of candy swirl in their minds until they’re dizzy with excitement. What possibly can be better than that? 

Christian parents, stay with me here. Halloween is a golden time for us to shine. 






Do you remember what it was like when you were a kid?
   
I don’t remember ever buying a costume at the store. On occasion, we did buy some of those cheap plastic masks you attach to your head with a rubber band. They made your face sweat from the carbon dioxide circulating underneath. If you didn’t pass out from the carbon dioxide, the rubber band eventually snapped in two sometime during the night. The masks made brief appearances to elicit candy and then they were usually tossed aside.

My costumes were always homemade. During the 1970's the costumes my sister and I wore would be taboo now, but they sure were popular back then. We dressed as hobos, gypsies, and fat people. I apologize. It wasn’t that we were trying to be offensive—we just longed for lots of candy and had to use whatever we had on hand—bandannas, old clothes, cheap jewelry, and pillows. Occasionally, if there wasn’t much time to prepare, an old sheet was thrown over our heads and two eye holes were cut out. That’s about as oogie-boogie as it got. We weren’t into zombies, vampires, and witches.

If the stores sold the horror masks back then, as they do now, I sure didn’t see them. I'm most appreciative to my Mom for that!

As I grew older, I became more aware of the dark side of Halloween, and that did scare me. I respect people’s opinions about not doing anything on Halloween, not to acknowledge it in any form or fashion. 

However, our family considers Halloween a great time to shine the Light of Christ into the darkness.

(Halloween is a great time to shine the Light of Christ.)
    
A few ways we do that:

We carve angels, crosses and the name of Jesus on our pumpkins.

We attach Bible verses to the candy we give children. Sometimes we’ve given witness tracts or New Testaments with the candy. 

We never allow our children to dress up in costumes that would scare another child or offend our Lord and Savior. Same thing goes for any decorations.

We help with a fall festival at church each year. Our church’s fall event is called Hallow Him. Many people, who never enter our church on a Sunday, come to this event.

For the Trunk-or-Treat event,  the trunks of vehicles are decorated and filled with candy to give children. We decorate our vehicle in a way that tells something about the love of God. 

It may seem challenging, but there are tons of cool ideas you can get from the Bible. Once, I saw a van decorated as a whale. The trunk was opened like the mouth of the whale and inside sat a man dressed like Noah. Think of the opportunities they had to present the gospel when children asked why that man was inside a whale!


(Reflect the love of Christ in all you do.)
     
Even if you don't dress up or decorate with a Biblical theme, you can still present something wholesome and light-hearted in contrast to the dark themes of evil.

Christians, I challenge you. If you participate in events during the end of October, search for ways to be a Light.

People will be out searching for free goodies. Many of those often search for pleasure in all the wrong places. Time after time, they are left dissatisfied. The world offers tempting avenues to fulfillment—but just like candy—nothing lasts.

Halloween is a golden time for you to shine Light into the darkness. Guide people to something that will last forever. Give them the hope and truth of Jesus Christ.


I'd love to hear your thoughts on this topic.














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