Saturday, October 27, 2007

5 Reasons to not Hide in a Bunker on Halloween

If you are a believer who does things like Fall Festivals or just stays at home for Halloween, then please understand I'm not faulting you. I'm merely suggesting an alternative. There is certainly a lot within Halloween to hate, but I believe it is also an opportunity which can be redeemed. Here are 5 reasons to not hide in a bunker on Halloween.

1. No competition - It is free game on trying to reach people. You don't have to worry about competing with Jehovah's Witnesses, Mormons, and other cult members ... or even many evangelicals. You might be the only one out there as a light to your neighbors and people coming to the neighborhood.

2. It is one of the few (if not only) times during the year when almost all of your neighbors are out with their kids, some neighbors that you may not even know, and you have an opportunity to see them and practice hospitality. You might even have people visiting from nearby neighborhoods. It is a free and easy opportunity to make connections with people in the community -they come right to you!

3. Octobet 31 is a great excuse to talk about something much more important than candy and Jack-O-Lanterns -the great truth which God restored to humanity through the Protestant Reformation. October 31, 1517 is often hailed as "Reformation Day" -the day when Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses to the castle door. You could go from there into a discussion of the Gospel.

4. Going out and meeting neighbors and getting candy doesn't mean you are worshipping Satan. Sometimes I think we create a false dilemma: since Halloween contains some pagan symbolism and even some pagan emphases, then your choices are really a) be a Christian and separate from your neighbors and people who come to your home, or b) slaughter chickens, dress up like demons, and serve Satan with the rest of them. Would Christmas or Easter or birthdays or Valentine's Day or many other things like that in our culture survive the same logic? Or is there a way to use this as an opportunity which is redeemable, like meeting neighbors and having fun with your kids?

5. Its fun. Be creative. Use it as an opportunity to start a new tradition. This year, we might have a BBQ on the driveway and play the film "The Princess Bride" on a television under the cover of our open garage, with chairs, food, and maybe some well-written Gospel tracts or pamphlets or books. Heck, I even like to go get candy and say hello to neighbors, myself! Do we eat it all? No, it is admittedly wasteful, but that isn't the point. I take my kids because it is fun, not because we want to eat until we are sick.

Here is another great example of being creative, given to me by a friend. Erect a cross in your front yard, put a light on it, and have a human skeleton kneeling before it. Put a sign next to it that says, "You were dead in your trespasses and sins." Are you telling me that wouldn't spawn some conversation and send a strong message?

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