Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Celebrating Halloween and You are a Christian

Riding the train at the zoo I overheard the following:

"Honey, we believe that God is the light of the world. We don't celebrate things like this that celebrate this kind of darkness."

This dad was not trying to talk quietly to his daughter (who was not much older than my daughter). This dad was sitting right behind us. This dad didn't recognize me, but we knew each other from our time in Amway (a business that was ultimately responsible for bringing me to my relationship with Jesus). This dad said this right after my daughter said, "Mommy! Look at that HUGE spider! So spooky!" and giggled. This dad was judging me as a Christian, I could feel it.

As a Christian I do struggle with what secular things am I going to let my children partake in. I mean for goodness sake have you watched My Little Ponies with your girls lately? I am really glad we moved through that stage quickly!

My husband and I had conversations about it early in our parenting years about these topics. I clearly remember us having a conversation about it one night and the next church service our pastor talking explicitly about how God gives us things in our lives to enjoy. Enjoying those things is honoring God, the creator of all things. He went on to say that of course there are things of excess and things that can lead us down a dark road, but not all of those things do in moderation. "So if I want to enjoy a beer or two while watching football I can enjoy a beer or two and I am honoring God. I am honoring God because He gave me these things to enjoy!"

I remember us going home and having another conversation that we are going to enjoy the secular celebrations that we had been enjoying. We were even going to enjoy Halloween which may seem like you are celebrating darkness, demons and the devil. We were going to Trick or Treat as they got to the ages of that. We were going to embrace Santa and all things that seem secular about Christmas. God gave us these things to enjoy. When we enjoy them well, we ultimately are pointing right back at Him.

We know in our hearts that we are filled with the light and we will shine in all darkness. In fact as our kids get older we will be throwing big Halloween parties to love on those we love and enjoy the people in our lives being that light.

While I was thinking about how I was going to put this post together for you I looked up the origins of Halloween. I found some great information, nothing that my non-historical mind could put together any better than the authors themselves did.

Answers in Genesis: Halloween History and the Bible
uCatholic: The Catholic Origins of Halloween
CelebratingHolidays: Halloween

So as a Christian parent, what can you do if you are struggling with this celebration? I would suggest starting with sometime in prayer. Where is God trying to take you with this celebration? Is this a time where you are just to enjoy the things that are fall? Is this a time where you can throw a huge celebration and be that beacon of light? Is this a road of excess that could be taking you down a dark path that you should be steering clear of right now? This can only be determined by spending time with our Heavenly Father.

If this is a time that you should be enjoying, embrace what you feel comfortable with. Listen to that inner voice! I embrace the safe-spooky. I lean toward the cute Halloween, not the dark. I embrace the character costumes over the Halloween ones.

You will find what is right for your family. Embrace it and know that in all that you do, you are honoring God.


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