Sunday, October 31, 2010

Halloween Contemplations of a Christian Mama

As a Christian, I consider every year the pros and cons of celebrating Halloween. On the one hand, I have so many good and fun memories of Halloween as a child and even now see it as an enjoyable, imaginative event. But I am also not so fond of the scary stuff and the gruesome, evil things it can sometimes 'celebrate'. And so I think its my responsibility, especially as a parent, to evaluate what our family's motives are in participating. This year I came across an article which I feel sums up my thoughts and feelings about Halloween well. This paragraph in particular:
Many of the ideas and rituals that have contributed to the Halloween mish-mash aren’t congruent with our beliefs. However, setting aside times to remember or honor those we love that have passed away (hopefully to be with our Savior Jesus) is not a bad idea. [Referring to "All Saints'/Souls' Day"] On a less somber note, wearing Spider-man costumes, making funny faces on vegetables, and engaging in neighborhood activities where one can both give and receive hospitality is not something we oppose. Fictional fantasy tales of monsters and elves even scary ones are not wholly inappropriate either, whether punctuated on this particular weekend or sprinkled throughout the year in classic tales from authors including Tolkien and Lewis. We regard Halloween as a second-hand issue and ask that every Christian examine their response to the modern-day Halloween celebration in our culture.

I encourage you to read the whole article, especially if you are a Christian struggling with the good and the bad of October 31st. Considering that today is Reformation Day too, I add the words of Martin Luther "to go against conscience is neither right nor safe. Here I stand, I can do no other, so help me God. Amen. " Whatever your stance may be on the whole Halloween issue, be sure it is one that does not go against conscience.

As a side note, this year did give me a great opportunity to talk to my three year old about how powerful God is. The scary things she saw this Halloween at the stores or while trick or treating provided the perfect chance to teach her about how God protects her because he is stronger and bigger and more powerful then any frightening thing!

"Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you." (Deuteronomy 31:6)

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