Happy Halloween

Halloween is one of those holidays that we don’t know what to do with.  As Christians, we hesitate because of the mixed history associated with it.  Personally, my kids have not dressed up and gone trick-or-treating.  We don’t judge those who choose to do so, but we have taken a different route with our family.

My family has made it a habit of engaging with our neighbors on Halloween.  If the weather is good, we set up a fire pit and serve popcorn, hot chocolate, and coffee for the parents.  And yes there is candy for the kids…and it’s good candy.  In a neighborhood where people tend to drive up into their garages and disappear, we love the fact that we can engage in a natural way with our neighbors.  And our kids don’t lament that they are not out trick-or-treating.  Instead they enjoy the family time around the fire and meeting all our neighbors.  They understand that we are choosing to live missionally as a family.  It’s been amazing to see how many friendships we have made over the years by simply being engaged with our neighbors in such a personal way.

As a church, we seek to demonstrate love to our neighbors.  That said, we wouldn’t miss the opportunity to pass out candy and love on the families in our hometown of Garner.  We choose to live missionally rather than ignore the day.  Thousands of kids and their parents will dress up on Friday and walk around to get free candy at the park.  So we’ll be there to show the love of Christ in a practical way.  We are giving out candy and it’s chocolate J!

So yes, “Happy Halloween.”  It doesn’t have to be scary.  With this holiday and every holiday:

  1. Make the decision to celebrate every holiday with the goal to be missional. Seize the opportunity for discipleship.  Don’t go through the motions of Thanksgiving and Christmas either without considering how you can living missionally this year and disciple your family.
  2. Don’t be afraid to talk with your children about why we do Halloween different. We don’t serve the god of the dead; we serve the God of the living.  What a wonderful time of year to teach this to your children.
  3. Remember we are on the same team. You may choose to trick-or-treat and we may choose not to, but if we are all seeking to love Jesus and love our neighbors, then there is no need for friendly fire.  Romans 8 is a great chapter to study if you want to consider God’s perspective on this matter.

I pray all who call on the name of Jesus, will be bold, shrewd, and missional ambassadors for King Jesus this holiday season.