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Halloween: Celebrate Or Participate?

In my latest post I discussed how I create “A Merry Halloween.”  I shared some of my funny and festive Halloween decor and collectibles, and some ways that  I continue to participate in Halloween activities without incorporating the darker aspects of the holiday.

 

For some believers (followers of Jesus Christ who truly desire to walk in His light and follow His example by faith,  living a life as outlined by scripture to the best of our abilities through the enabling of the Holy Spirit) this subject can perhaps be a little confusing.

Should we as Christians participate in Halloween activities at all? Do we have to avoid the holiday altogether? What does scripture say?

Scripture clearly states that we absolutely are not to have fellowship with darkness of any kind… or even speak of it!

Hmm. What does that suggest about Halloween which glorifies all that is spooky and fearful?

Ephesians 5:11-13

And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.

2 Timothy 1:7

For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of love, power and a sound mind.

Yikes! God clearly does not want us to have a spirit of fear, create a spirit of fear, indulge a spirit of fear or invite a spirit of fear! “Fear not” or “Do not be afraid” is referenced 365 times in the Bible! Enough for a daily reminder! Coincidence? Of course not!

Yet, what else does scripture teach about grace and not having to live under “the law?” Aren’t we under grace? Can we participate in cultural celebrations withing “crossing the line?”

These are tough questions which only get harder when we delve deeper! We could also start questioning every holiday in general due to commercialism, over spending, or pagan roots. For example, we could ponder Christmas trees, (originally a pagan tradition) or “playing Santa” or gluttonous holiday eating…and the list goes on and on.

For those of us who have been called to the front lines of ministry in spiritural warfare, Halloween is a topic that definitely must be addressed. There are certainly some individual instances where Halloween must be avoided for a season or perhaps even permanently avoided in individual cases depending on the particular situation and as God directs.

 

In my particular case after much prayer and reflection I have learned how to make a “Merry Halloween” that does not go against my spiritual beliefs or open up the possibility to me or my family being the target of enemy attack. This was the result of a few years working through this whole Halloween issue through the guidance of the Holy Spirit. I loved Halloween, but after I became obedient to what the Lord told me to do, He actually took most of the love away of all the spooky things, the ghost hunting outings, and areas of  “compromise” that I had allowed in my life that unfortunately had negative consequences for me in the spiritual realm. He also gave me clear parental instincts and guidance as to how I could continue to allow my child to participate in Halloween activities without glorifying it. He provided opportunities to explain the dangers of occult, scary movies, and what the Bible teaches about these subjects without me having to become “preachy.” Everyone seems to be enjoying our “Merry Halloweens” these past couple of years and not missing any of the truly scary garbage at all!

Personally, after much prayer and reflection and trying to rationalize with God over the matter, I finally gave in and tossed many, many Halloween decorations that had any kind of direct occult, devil or demonic reference, dark witchcraft, spell casting, murder, mayhem, chaos or anything that invoked any spirit of fear. I never really decorated with gory things anyway, but there were some old things that were really creepy. Some of those things were “cool” vintage junkin’ finds, and some were collectibles that were worth some money. But, I tossed ’em.

As Dr. Charles Stanley says: “Obey God and leave all the consequences to Him!”

Well, I don’t miss any of it, and having only one tote of Halloween is sure easier on my back than lugging out 12 of them! He took away my desire for those things after I threw them away! He also showed me many strongholds, one of which was a spirit of fear. I still am learning to overcome it, but I remain victorious through staying in the LOGOS, the Word, the living word of God.

I have learned how to make a “Merry Halloween” that does not go against my spiritual beliefs or guidance of the Holy Spirit. I used to go all out with the really spooky decor, but as I grew in my Christian walk, faced serious health and spiritual illnesses, and had to trust God for my deliverance,  I found that the darkness could not coexist with the light, and the truth about Halloween was revealed to me. Halloween was in fact one of those strongholds! Certain aspects of the holiday I once loved now literally can turn my stomach because it goes against the truth God has shown me.

I now focus on things that are “hauntingly beautiful” and elegant as I shared in my previous post. Not things that are actually haunted! It is a fun artistic challenge to use things I already have in new and creative ways that reflect some fun cultural Halloween traditions. I also work to make fun and festive displays that celebrate the beauty of fall, and the fun of being a kid and making memories with family and friends. As far as creepy and spooky goes, there are creative ways to elicit shivers without evil intent! Let’s face it. No one really likes disease carrying rats!  Are they demonic? No! Gross, well, I suppose there are some rat lovers out there, but most of us would say “Yes, they are gross!” So I stick a few fake rats outside for some Halloween fun! I make my witch look glamorous, and my skeleton is always dressed in style! My goal is to make people smile! Not cry!

Kicking up crunchy leaves while going door to door and visiting with neighbors is a yearly tradition that can be wholesome and family oriented. Watching It’s The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown each year brings joy and togetherness in our family!

Jesus came to set us free! He wants us to be able to live a joyous and abundant life, and He certainly knows our hearts. We are on a journey with Him in this transient pilgrimage to our real home, and there will be times when he asks us to give up things we see no harm in or requires even more of us than we understand. That is because He knows what we are up against in the spirit realm, and what is best for us!

 

The Christian walk is a growing and learning process. And for as many absolutes as there are in scripture, God most certainly does have individualized spiritual paths for each of us. Therefore, I present this topic for each reader to consider on a personal level especially if you are needing healing or spiritual deliverance from any situation. Time alone with God and daily devotion to prayer, fasting and scripture reading will give you the answers every time. God always keeps His promise to meet us when we seek Him in truth. He doesn’t promise to give us what we want, but He will always give us what we need!

 

I cannot say that I will always continue to participate in Halloween. I do know that the more I walk in His light, the less I can stand the dark, or anything associated with it.

Luke 12:48

To whom much is given, much is required.

Next year during Halloween season I will be addressing this topic in more detail with more scripture references to those things which we as Christians most certainly should not participate in when it come to Halloween. I have been set free from things I didn’t even know that had a hold on me. Praise God for his infinite love and mercy!

 

Amber

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4 Comments

  • Reply Debra@CommonGround

    This is such a great post, Amber. I’ve been through exactly what you have, in contemplating the participation of Halloween as a Christian. Like you, Halloween was my second favorite holiday, but mostly because it was my grandmother’s birthday and I have such fond memories of Halloween because of her and family fun. As someone who has health problems, I don’t want to involve myself in any way with the original concept of Halloween that is connected to death and darkness. It’s often a fine line in how we portray this. I’ve shared some fun memorabilia, but that’s about it, and even then I feel not sure. thanks so much for sharing this post!

    October 31, 2017 at 5:10 pm
    • Reply Amber Lyon Ferguson

      Debra, even in writing the post I was questioning some of the things I still have around. I am also unsure as time goes on. I didn’t know if anyone would read this post, but I knew God wanted me to write it. I did mention you and your blog in my latest “Merry Halloween” post because I loved how you explained the concepts of celebrating the memories and not the holiday itself. As of now, I can still participate in Halloween fun and nostalgia but I know each year I will do a little less Halloween, and more fall. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday and the past few years I am always looking forward to seeing all my turkey tureens instead of the ghosts and goblins. Thank you for reading my friend!

      October 31, 2017 at 5:30 pm
  • Reply Krstin

    Amber, I share a lot of the same feelings as you so eloquently put into words. I feel that the social traditions of Halloween are part of my children’s memory making and tradition when kept fun! Thank you for sharing this!

    October 31, 2017 at 6:00 pm
  • Reply Sherry

    Such good reflection Amber on what God is showing you about this holiday. It was also something I went through. God shows me weekly how deviating from His laws can separate us. After being a lost lamb I will not be deviating anymore.

    November 14, 2017 at 5:47 am
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