Teaching Our Children to Imitate Good

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If you ask me the question, “Can Christians celebrate Halloween?”, my answer would be a resounding, ” Yes, of course they can.”  Growing up in Central Indiana in the 70’s, Halloween was one of the most fun times of the year.  My friends and I would rush home from our neighborhood school, Central Elementary (Go Stars!) and immediately  get dressed in our home-made costumes with the plastic character masks bought from K-Mart or the grocery store. The ones that had super tiny eye and nose holes you could hardly see through or breath out of.  I am sure we drove our parents nuts running around waiting for the street lights to pop on, signaling the start of “Trick-Or Treating”.  Now, back then it was all about the treating, because if we were ever caught tricking we were in big trouble.   We can teach our children to imitate good by following Jesus, and what better time to do that than Halloween.

My answer to celebrating Halloween as a Christian is a resounding yes is for a few reasons which are found in 3 John 1:11, “Beloved, do not imitate evil but imitate good. Whoever does good is from God; whoever does evil has not seen God.”

First of all, to throw in a little History lesson, Halloween started as a Christian holiday, the eve of All-Saints Day, November 1.It is also the celebration of The Reformation which is a specific time in history where Martin Luther is celebrated for winning religious freedom.  Both of these are truths, which I would have to say are good things. (And so did BillyGraham.org)

I also believe as a child of God, raised in a Christian home that celebrated Halloween, we might have said, “Trick-Or-Treat” as our neighbors answered the door, but we didn’t really mean the “trick” part.  I mentioned earlier that if we were ever caught “tricking” we were in big trouble.  That was a true statement. (And those of you that follow my blog regularly know so does my mom, she’ll vouch for that statement I am sure in the comments). Our parents just taught us this was a fun night, to go out with friends, get candy and treats from our neighbors, and stay up just a little later than usual.  It was safe. Everyone knew their neighbors.  Yes there were some stingy treat givers, but no one cared.  We were happy-go-lucky kids having fun.  Our neighbors were giving good candy with smiles on their faces.

I was taught to “imitate good”. And as a Christian parent I taught my son the same ways my parents taught me about Halloween.  When my son was growing up in the early 2000’s we lived in a great neighborhood in McKinney, TX.  with amazing neighbors.  We took our kids around the block, door to door in their cute costumes “trick-or-treating”. No mischief here.  Just lots of smiles, laughs, and fun.

I believe as Christian parents when it comes to deciding if you are going to celebrate Halloween with your children is obviously a personal decision.  If, like me you do choose to celebrate keep 3 John 1:11 in mind and teach our children and grandchildren to imitate good.

Imitate Good:  Teach your children there really are no tricks, it’s just a saying.

Imitate Good: You can choose costumes that are positive characters not evil ones.

Imitate Good: Get to know your neighbors, have a Halloween block party that is alcohol   free and safe and fun for everyone.

Imitate Good: This is a great time to share the Word of God, invite unchurched                    neighbors to visit your church, or hand out Christian coloring sheets with                            candy.

Whatever your family chooses to do tonight, be safe, imitate good and have fun!  And kids, share a little candy with mom and dad, and grandma and grandpa!

Love and Light,

Jane Ann

PS, I am adding this here because I do understand we are not living in a world like it was in the 70’s.  Please parents, I hate to say it, but check your kids candy before they take a bite.  It pains me that we have to do this, to think that there are people who would want to harm our precious children and grandchildren.  These are the ones that have not seen God, these are the people we need to reach.  Imitate good and pray for them.