I really enjoy Halloween.
Yeah, I know there is a lot of demonic stuff associated with Halloween… but that distinction is not really all that unique. Many of our Western holidays are associated with ancient pagan celebrations in one way or another (even Christmas!). In fact, All Hallows Eve used to be a very spiritual time for Christians in Europe,1200 years ago, the Pope converted the Celtic celebration of the dead into a "Christian" celebration of Catholic Saints. At that time, the three days of celebration (not just one evening!) were called "Hallowmas". (Click here for the history of the holiday.)
I’ve gone back and forth through out my lifetime on whether Halloween is a good holiday. As a kid, I absolutely loved it. Are you kidding?! I got to dress up in some crazy costume, walk around the neighborhood at twilight, and got junk loads of free candy! Afterwards I got to lay out all my stash in a huge pile on my bed and trade with my brothers for Nerds and Kit Kats! Amazing stuff! But as a young adult, I began to freak out about the occult influence on the holiday. Why in the world would I be comfortable with a holiday that honors demons and death and gore and fear? In some years I would cancel any other activity that night except to retreat and pray against all the evil stuff that was to happen that night.
Now, I love the holiday again. And I’ve come up with three reasons why:
- I’ve got three kids. The fact is that my kids love Halloween like I did. In the innocence of their hearts they delight in the creativity and fun of getting dressed up. And they revel in the one day a year they get to collect a bag full of candy! They also love sharing their costumes with their friends and showing off their whit to our neighbors. Which brings me to point #2…
- I’ve got hundreds of neighbors. What other night of the year do we get to interact with so many of our neighbors than Halloween? Rarely does any day bring neighbors out of their houses and onto the streets like this day. I actually feel that it would be wrong for me in the eyes of God not to take the opportunity to interact with and build relationships with my neighbors on this night. A darkened door could be a sign of an uninviting house. So we turn all our lights on and keep the candy pouring out.
- I’ve got a prayerful heart. In fact, I spend the whole night praying. That’s something at least that I learned from my prayer warrior Halloween nights. And it would be absolutely wrong for me to neglect the spiritual crap that happens on this holiday. Plus, in interacting with my neighbors, I should be praying! I want to be a light on a very dark night, so that those around us can see Jesus and learn of his love for us.