“To Trick or not to Treat”
I want my cupcake! That’s what I said YEARS ago when I got home from trick or treating as my dad took away the freshly frosted pastry that I had in my plunder. The reason for this confiscation was because some nut jobs the previous year had given out dangerous treats and parents were warned not to take food which wasn’t properly packaged. I was bummed. (I actually snuck back to the trash later on and retrieved my snack.) But every year the question arises as to what Christ followers should do about Halloween. The only time I really get nervous in this quandary is when someone says definitively that everyone who claims to be a Christian MUST take their point of view.
I suppose it’s somewhat like the debate back in the first century church over whether or not one could eat meat from the market places that had been sacrificed to idols. To do this would hurt the conscience of some Christians while others just saw it as a hunk of beef and were ready to dive in with knife and fork in hand. The answer was really one of faith rather than Law and ultimately responding to others in love. Like some other faith and cultural issues today there seems to be a couple sides to this debate. The truth is that Halloween is indeed a serious day of sacrilege. Satan, demons, and the occult are all real and the thought of celebrating such things seems a little confusing for a people who are called to be “Holy because He is Holy.” Actual Satanists really do celebrate Halloween and some with animal sacrifices. So while most people simply look at this as just a nice time to throw candy to kids, the fact of the matter is that demonic things are done on this day. On the other hand this day can also be a time to connect with kids and their families around us. I have some friends who really look forward to this day. A few years ago Debi wrote a blog post on this tension which may shed some light on the issue. For us this year we’re not hosting a Harvest Festival at our church but are rather encouraging everyone to reach out to their neighbors with some love and fun. The plan at the Hinton Hacienda this year is to haul a HUGE old 45 inch TV tube out onto the driveway and show Charlie Brown’s The Great Pumpkin, give out chocolate and maybe even grill some hot dogs for parents while just hanging out with our neighbors. The plan is to be salt and light during a spiritually dark time.
What are you going to do this year and why?