Preparing Their Hearts for the Holidays

Being the Light on a Dark Holiday

I grew up in a home where we didn’t celebrate Halloween.  We would go to our church for a Fall festival but it was usually before Halloween.  We would dress up, play games, eat candy, and go on a hayride.  I made some wonderful memories during that time.

Although I understood why we didn’t celebrate Halloween, I would be lying if I said that I never felt left out.  My friends still went trick or treating and went to haunted houses.  I wanted to do these things as a child, and I grew bitter towards my parents for not letting me participate in these activities.  That was what all the cool kids were doing! *Sigh*

When our girls were itty bitty, my husband and I had planned to celebrate Halloween in a fun way.  It was cute to dress up our little baby girls.

So, we went downtown where all of the businesses hand out candy.  Innocent enough, right?

Well, I remember getting in the car and feeling really uneasy about what we had just done.  I looked at my husband and said, “I don’t want to do this again.”  He agreed with me and we talked about everything that we had seen that night that bothered us.

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I was disappointed with the example other children were setting for my very small children. So many older children were focused on only themselves.  Sure, kids are selfish (so are us adults) and getting candy is enjoyable.  But when it is causing children to be rude and out of control, that’s not glorifying God. We had several kids nearly knock my toddler down because she wasn’t getting candy fast enough.

So, since we don’t take our kids trick or treating, what do we do? We have tried ignoring the people knocking on our door and avoiding the holiday all together, but my girls are interested in it because everyone else was.  I also began to feel convicted about bouncing from one extreme to the other.

I felt like I needed to find the median and what our family was comfortable with. Instead of teaching them to ignore our visitors we have started to encourage them to share the love of Jesus with these families.

Last year, we started a new tradition of covering each piece a candy with fun washi tape and we wrote Jesus loves you on each piece. This simple act of sharing the Gospel allowed my husband and I to talk with our children on how important it is for us to share God’s love.

We explained that some kids go door to door and ask for candy on Halloween but that we were going to do other fun things instead.

I always make sure to let my kids have some candy, dress up if they want to (with the dress-up clothes they already have) and we usually have a fun family night. Playing games together, making a pizza and a special treat totally distracts them from the fact that they aren’t doing what everyone else is doing.

In fact, I want my children to be okay with not doing what everyone else is doing.  It’s important that my husband and I train our children to know that God has called us to be different.

Now, you may not agree with this and that’s okay.  I’m sharing our own personal convictions when it comes to Halloween.  Let me know what your plans are this year for Halloween.

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