Let me start off by saying that every year since I was a little, little thing, I’ve celebrated Halloween. I started out by dressing as a little pink bunny, a pumpkin, a fairy, then a butterfly, and a princess, Dorothy from the “Wizard of Oz”, a cowgirl, another princess, and a prairie girl (which I’ve been every year since 5th grade). My costumes haven’t exactly been scandalous or creepy in any way. The only decorations that my family has ever decorated with for Halloween was a few pumpkins (carved with smiley faces or our favorite Disney characters). And my grandparents handed our “Jesus Loves You” pencils for our Halloween treat. I guess you could say that we’re pretty conservative with the holiday. I’m not into the scary stuff whatsoever, and neither is my family.
So why do we celebrate the day associated with witches and evil spirits and the devil?
Well, first off, we believe that God is the Creator… God created everything. He created pumpkins, and harvest, and candy, and smiling, joyful children. We celebrate what God has created for us to enjoy. Obviously, God does not want us to enjoy evil, so we steer away from that. However, chocolate bars and ladybug costumes don’t exactly fit the evil bill, so why should we avoid what God has given us to enjoy?
Secondly, Halloween is NOT the devil’s day, in any way whatsoever. The devil does not get to have a day that God created. The devil does not have power over God, so he cannot have his own day. The devil shall not rule over us by not allowing us to enjoy a day that our God has created. He simply does not possess such power over somehow as mighty as God. “This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it!” Psalm 118:24. October 31st- and every other day is God’s day.
October 31st is also Reformation Day! Reformation Day is when Martin Luther hung up his 95 theses on the church door. These theses made it clear that we are saved by grace, not by good works or paying to get into Heaven, as the Church was claiming. Once again proving that it is- as is every other day of the year- God’s day.
Now, my town is extremely conservative. The children dress up as little animals or bugs or princesses or pumpkins in their cute, often homemade, costumes. They are adorable. While there always is the exception, I would say that 98% of the children in our town dress conservatively. And not even 1% of the people living in town decorate for Halloween in a scary way. Pumpkins are the way to go in our town. This is not to say that you need to move to a good clean town, I’m just saying that many people do not celebrate the holiday in ways that it is often perceived.
There are some boundaries that we have chosen to follow in our Halloween celebration:
- We may not dress in an costume that would suggest something evil, scary, creepy, or scandalous… Our costumes must be G-rated, so to speak.
- We tend to not stop at houses with scary or creepy decorations outside of them, not in a way that’s trying to avoid an evil spirit or anything, we just don’t approve of the showing of such support for these types of things.
- We don’t decorate our house in any way, besides our carved pumpkins, or if we happen to splurge on fancy, cutesy leaf trash bags that look like pumpkins, we might do that.
- We live this day as it is… a day of celebration for the creation of harvest, pumpkins, and fun. Our God was very generous to allow us to have fun (in a godly way) and enjoy his wondrous works as well. All in all, that’s what Halloween is to us, as any other day, a celebration for our Creator. Only on October 31st, there’s candy and pumpkins. 🙂
- It is expected that we act respectful and kind if we do go out trick-or-treating. (You might be wondering… you’re seventeen and you still go trick-or-treating? Yes! Lots of kids my age do! And, in a town as small as mine, the adults love getting to see us every year and continue to had out candy- even if we’re teenagers! :)) Trick-or-treating was when I really had to get out from behind my parent’s legs and say ‘thank-you’. I was not allowed to leave until I said it, and said “have a good evening!” or “good-bye!”. I had to be respectful if I wanted a piece of candy, and when I left.
- We started out by ‘trunk-or-treating’, which is basically where people from our church would pull up (usually at the church parking lot), pop open their trunks, and hand out candy or little church-related trinkets (usually from Oriental Trading… if you’ve ever gotten anything from there you know what I mean. 🙂 ) So, we started out by knowing that Halloween is a day where you get candy and these cute little Sunday School crafts. We knew that this was a day that was related to church somehow. We didn’t know that evil was celebrated in anyway. I think that I would’ve cried had I seen scary decorations as a little thing, so I’m glad that my parents started us out there, and taught us right from wrong when they let us go to houses.
- I don’t partake in any events in which these types of things might be featured. In fact, Saturday night was the Halloween carnival. I chose not to set up or attend the event since our class has the haunted house (set up in the school gym) this year.
- We have to give our parents a quarter of our Halloween candy stash since they lugged us around all night…. this one is a joke, but seriously, we do end up giving up some candy because trick-or-treating gets old really quickly if all you do is drive!
All in all, my family does celebrate Halloween. What we don’t celebrate is evil. To us, Halloween is another day to celebrate our Creator. We don’t always approve of the costumes that show up at our door, but we still hand out candy to them! We love them anyways. We don’t love what some people celebrate, but we love them anyways. We hate sin, but we don’t hate sinners. That’s kind of the lesson that I think that my parents were teaching us all these years. People are going to celebrate and believe different things than us, but you still need to love them anyway.
So, no. This post isn’t to degrade you if you don’t celebrate Halloween (you have your reasons too), or if you celebrate in a scary, evil, creepy way that I wouldn’t approve of. I guess that in an upstairs, downstairs sort of way, I’m trying to say that no matter how you celebrate, even if I disagree, I am still going to love YOU. After all, it’s not my job to decide what’s right and what’s wrong for you or anyone else- that is up to God.
So, have a Happy Halloween, Reformation Day, or just another day in which you choose to worship God. However and whatever you choose to do on October 31st, just remember that no matter what, it is God’s day.
P.S. I’d love to discuss this topic in the comments! If you have anything that you’d like to add or reasons that you do or do not celebrate on October 31st, I’d love to hear them! 🙂