Halloween and the Johnsens 2012

If you've been here for a while (five years old this blog is!!), you've read our ever evolving stance on Halloween and how it fits in with our love for Jesus.  This past year has probably been my biggest growth ring (so far) when it comes to being a parent.  I've learned more this last year than all my years combined.  Which is great considering that parenting just keeps getting harder.

Yep.  You mothers of babies.  I'll tell you something no one ever told me.  Babies are easy.  Easy.  Easy.  Looking back, the baby years were a breeze.  Basic needs met and simple comforts could solve all problems.  Each year my boys get older, the more complex their problems are...the less likely a kiss from mom can cure the world.

Thankfully, I've been blessed with the will to always learn and this last year I read "Grace Based Parenting".  It changed my views on my entire parenting life.  I approached Halloween with a much more simple lens:  Is this a heart issue?

No? No.  Proceed.

That's it.  I know that in our house Halloween comes down to dressing up for fun and getting candy because of it.  That's it.

No demonic worship, no gore, no guts.  Just pure and simple fun.

Many Christians today choose to make it a heart issue.  If it is for them then by all means, proceed according to your hearts convictions but don't shake your finger at me while you do it.

Consider this in Romans 14:5-9 Say, one person thinks that some days should be set aside as holy and another thinks that each day is pretty much like any other. There are good reasons either way. So, each person is free to follow the convictions of conscience.
What’s important in all this is that if you keep a holy day, keep it for God’s sake; if you eat meat, eat it to the glory of God and thank God for prime rib; if you’re a vegetarian, eat vegetables to the glory of God and thank God for broccoli. None of us are permitted to insist on our own way in these matters. It’s God we are answerable to—all the way from life to death and everything in between—not each other. That’s why Jesus lived and died and then lived again: so that he could be our Master across the entire range of life and death, and free us from the petty tyrannies of each other.

That about sums it up doesn't it.  Approach it with God and see what he says to you about it.  And then keep it between you and your family.  

And do some research...the History Channel has a great summary on Halloween and there's a lot of good that can be pulled from it's history. 

For example...Moses has been fascinated with mummies this Fall.  Instead of fleeing from them because of their "yuck" factor we turned it into a history lesson.  Moses and I talked about why mummies exist and what they were all about.  As we made all of our pumpkins into mummies we talked about how when Jesus died he would have been wrapped in a similar way, about becoming a new creation and what happens when you die.  Sounds deep for a pumpkin craft but Moses loved it and now he can tell you a short history on mummies instead of that they're "gross".

So we choose to be open to lessons as they approach, to look at the issue behind what we are approaching and to keep our decisions between us and God.  
And this gnome and hulk had a great time, a sugar high and immediately after were excited to look forward to Thanksgiving. :) 
And I had to include my adorable nephew.  Maybe the cutest tiger ever.  

"One of the marks of a certain type of bad man is that he cannot give up a thing himself without wanting every one else to give it up. That is not the Christian way. An individual Christian may see fit to give up all sorts of things for special reasons--marriage, or meat, or beer, or the cinema; but the moment he starts saying the things are bad in themselves, or looking down his nose at other people who use them, he has taken the wrong turning."- C.S. Lewis
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