Halloween. This word alone sends disgust and shivers down some Christians’ spines. It ensues arguments on social media and causes tension between friends and family. Though I myself enjoy dressing up, eating my weight in candy, and listening to the “Monster Mash,” I can respect the fact that plenty of people view the holiday as evil.
Maybe you don’t want to acknowledge the ghouls and goblins that have emerged among the vampires and fairy princesses to play tricks and seek treats at your doorstep. But maybe you still want to celebrate the autumn season with your loved ones!
Here are a few safe alternatives to the usual Halloween festivities:
1. Carve Pumpkins
Pumpkins are a sign of the harvest and are used around Thanksgiving as much as they are Halloween. Take this time to carve your favorite football team’s logo or a dog’s face into a pumpkin. Pinterest and YouTube videos present plenty of other fun ideas and tutorials. Check out this foundational carving video here.
2. Bake Goodies
Cobblers are a crowd-pleaser, and so are pies! Use this season’s ripe fruits as ingredients for desserts that you can share with neighbors. This is a tactful way to use the pumpkins you previously carved before they grow rotten.
3. Have a Party
If you have a place to welcome guests, set your own atmosphere with a party. Costumes are not required, but you have the ability to request boundaries (i.e. nothing gory or spooky). Think of fun games to entertain the kids and provide relevant snacks like pretzel-chocolate-and-marshmallow bonfires.
4. Recognize the Harvest
The autumn season is a time to reap the harvest of all the labors sown throughout the rest of the year. Much like farmers plant their crops and wait for them to grow, children and adults alike have put in efforts at school and work. Their fruit? Holiday breaks/vacations. You can use a hayride trip as an opportunity to share in the biblical principle of tithes and offerings.
5. Go Apple-Picking
Apple orchards are at their prime when fall rolls around. Enjoy an outing at your nearest farm and find the best Red Delicious, Granny Smith, and Gala apples. This is your chance to try your hand at making homemade apple cider!
As I was growing up, my parents were wary of the dangers of taking candy from strangers in random neighborhoods. Therefore, they preferred taking my brother and me to church events where we could safely get candy out of decorated car trunks. Your kids can dress up and enjoy bounce houses or fun mini-games to receive treats!
At the end of the day, it’s your choice how you spend the holiday! Don’t get roped into things that convict you or make you uncomfortable. Remember that, even though there may be people out there who seek to make Halloween about Satan, the enemy doesn’t own any of the days of the year. They all belong to God. And I could be wrong, but I imagine He Himself would enjoy harmless little pranks and a Milky Way.
Featured Image by Timothy Eberly