I've been pondering once again what my perspective should be on Halloween. We've run the gamut over the years, from "ignore it and pretend it isn't happening" to "participate fully because this is the best way to get to know our neighbors."
But once again I found myself re-evaluating it all as I was driving the kids home from a baseball game. My thoughts were whipping back and forth along these lines:
What does God want us to do?
Should we embrace it all and try to enjoy the evening with as many neighbors as possible?
But what about all the obnoxious teen-agers who get bussed into our neighborhood and wear disgusting costumes? What if my kids get nightmares just from seeing some of the gore?
Well, maybe we can just go to a few houses on the streets where we know a lot of people, and then come home.
But there are those "haunted" scary houses in between where the owners sit outside on their lawn and play that eerie music and have the big graveyard scene and everything.... what about nightmares and scarred brains?
But maybe minimalism isn't the way to go -- would Jesus be the one handing out the biggest candy bars?
But candy bars are actually BAD for everyone -- especially big ones -- especially when everyone's collecting hundreds of them in one night! Would Jesus be contributing to poor health?
So maybe He'd be out having a party or something? He'd probably find some way to collect a whole bunch of people who would want to sit around and listen to His wisdom.... But how do WE do that?
And anyway, Halloween is so gross with all the greedy people -- teen-agers and even adults-- who grub around from house to house just to collect an obscene amount of "loot." Why do I want to participate in that?
But if we turn off our porch light, aren't we just promoting the idea that Christians are just boring old curmudgeons?
Around about this point, I mused out loud, "I wonder what Jesus would do about Halloween."
Without even a pause, the 6-year old piped up from the backseat:
"I think He would dress up as a big heart. A big, beautiful, no-smudges heart."
I thought about that for a minute and then told him I thought he was right.
I don't know how exactly Jesus would handle all the greed and grossness of the night, but He surely would proceed with Love being the primary point.
And that is what I thought about for the rest of the drive home.