I remember sitting in our basement, curled up on the couch in a cozy blanket, watching movies in the pitch blackness. The doorbell would ring and we would wait in silence until the people walked away. This is how I spent my Halloween's as a kid.
I don't remember ever wanting it any other way. In fact, I remember being afraid of Halloween and disgusted by the dark, depressing, devilness of it. I still feel that way. When I drive down my street and see the neighbours house strung up with skeletons I shudder. I've been involved in witchcraft and seen people possessed....this is not child's play. I find it revolting that people expose their children to the gory gruesome blood, witches, and devil's and think it's fun. When did it ever become right to scare your children? On top of that...why is it suddenly polite to go to stranger's houses and demand candy?
That being said...I do think there is some good to this gross day. For instance, dressing up is fun, creative, and exciting for kids. It inspires the imagination and allows them to be someone else for a short while. I also think sweets and candy are fabulous. I limit them for my daughter, and myself...but let's face it...who can live without chocolate?
Now that I have a child of my own the whole question of Halloween has become a bigger one. I am faced with the decision of how I will portray this day to my daughter. Will I allow her to attend school Halloween parties, trick or treat, etc? How will we handle the situations we will surely face in the years to come?
Recently my husband and I discussed this and he came up with an interesting point. He said "If pre-Christians can take Christmas and turn it into a secular Holiday all about Santa Claus...why can't we take Halloween and turn it into a Christian one? Why do we have to run away or accept that this is just the way it is?" So we began discussing how we can make this day a positive thing for our daughter.
Here are a few of our ideas:
-Referring to it as "Hallowed" day instead of Halloween and making it about Christ's holiness. For example....God created so many amazing things.
-We can dress up like these animals or things to pay tribute to his creativity, his incredible artistic-ness.
-God has a wonderful Holy plan for our lives. We can dress up like different people (fireman, ballerina's, doctor's, etc) while we imagine what God's plan might look like for our lives. Maybe it will involve these things.
-Instead of making the day about GETTING...we'll make it about giving. Giving out candy at our door, and when we go door to door...giving candy to the homes rather than taking it. Either that or do the Unicef boxes thing where you can go door to door and collect change for Unicef. Or perhaps another charitable project.
-Rather than ignore the things she will be exposed to such as skeletons and scabs we'll talk about them. Talk about how the devil is real in the world and causes suffering but how Christ defeated death. In fact, Hallowed day falls at a great time of year for that, everything is dying so that it can be made new over the winter. Be refreshed.
These are a few of our ideas so far. How does your family handle Halloween and what are some of your ideas?