Christians Who Trick-Or-Treat

We are Christians who trick-or-treat. Well, my daughter does the trick-or-treating as my husband and I are just a bit too old!

This is not me trying to convince you that we are right. I’m just wanting to share a little bit of my perspective on Halloween as a Christian.

Whether you are a Christian who completely shuns all things Halloween, a Christian who is fine with Halloween alternatives and maybe giving out candy to Trick-or-Treaters, a Christian who is totally fine with Halloween, or a non-Christian who doesn’t get what the fuss is all about, I hope my thoughts will allow you to see Halloween from a different perspective for a moment.

WHAT IS ALL THE FUSS ABOUT?

“Halloween is the devils holiday.” You’ve heard this, right? Technically the word “Halloween” is based on the Christian holidays of All Saints Day (All Hallows Day) and All Hallows Eve. However, there is no doubt that the way Halloween is celebrated in modern culture is rooted in pagan and satanic practices and so many Christian choose to shun the holiday altogether.

GROWING UP IN THE HALLOWEEN-ALTERNATIVE ERA

Growing up in a Christian home in the 80’s and 90’s, Halloween was off limits. I never went trick-or-treating as a child. Parents sent letters to school asking for their children to be excused from Halloween themed events and projects. At church we learned all about the evils of the holiday.

No need to feel bad for me! I did not feel deprived at all. In fact, I very much looked forward to the end of October when our church would hold a Halloween alternative party for the kids and I could dress up as a character from the Bible (usually Queen Esther because she was awesome), play games, and get a TON of candy.

MY PROBLEM

It’s been a solid two decades now since my days of being a kid enjoying “Hallelujah Night” parties and shunning all things Halloween. As an adult, a neighbor, a parent, and a Christian, I have begun to question my anti-Halloween stance. Here are some reasons why:

1. Who gave the devil a day?!

You may be okay with reserving October 31st as “the devils” holiday and avoiding anything that appears to represent Halloween in any way, but that is not the choice I make. I find the idea of giving “the devil” a day of the calendar completely ludicrous. 
Participating in Trick-or-Treat no more makes a person a Satanist than celebrating Christmas makes an atheist a Christian.

2. Fear is a powerful thing.

As a child hearing about the evil holiday of Halloween, I was very afraid. The idea of it being the “devils holiday” was terrifying. I had no idea how to process the information I was being given about Halloween, and so I was just afraid. Now, as a parent I am very careful what I tell my daughter about Halloween. I see no reason to worry and scare innocent children over potentially abstract ideas. It’s not healthy.

3. What kind of Christian are you?

You know, it irritates me to no end that Christians will use the rejection of Halloween as an excuse to not bless the children in their neighborhood. What other time do you have an opportunity to be a kind, decent human and a light in your neighborhood literally dropped in your lap like this?
Ask yourself what kind of Christian you really are: the “rule” follower or a reflection of Christ?
I am beyond convinced that Jesus would have been out in the neighborhood giving candy to children on Trick-or-Treat night… You don’t believe me? Keep reading.

Christians Who Trick-Or-Treat

MY SOLUTION

Before we were even parents, my husband and I always passed out candy on Trick-or-Treat night. We looked forward to it! I remember my boss saying that he bought boxes of full-sized candy bars to pass out. His perspective was that he, as a Christian, should be giving out the best candy in the neighborhood.

I remember specifically one Trick-or-Treat night a few years ago. I got my huge bowl of candy all set up and ready. Before we went outside, my husband and I talked about how we wanted to be a light in our neighborhood. We made it a point to make eye contact with people, compliment every child we could, smile brightly, be friendly, and just enjoy our neighbors.

Fast forward a few years and we now had our own little one. Growing up not Trick-or-Treating made me feel like I should also not take my daughter out. But she was sooooo cute in her pink sock monkey costume! I decided to dress her up to take door-to-door in the neighborhood. Before we went out I seriously prayed and asked God to convict my heart if this was the wrong thing to do. Interestingly enough, the opposite happened. Walking around my neighborhood in the midst of groups of kids, families walking door-to-door, neighbors greeting each other with hospitality, having the opportunity to talk with neighbors who I had never met before… my heart was filled with peace and love.

Yes… peace and love. Not fear or condemnation.

You see, I don’t need anyone to tell me whether I should celebrate any part of Halloween or not. I follow Jesus’ example. If there is need for conviction, it will be HE who convicts me. And when I made this connection between Halloween and God’s voice in my heart, I realized that the reason I felt nervous about taking my daughter Trick-or-Treating has NOTHING to do with God’s leading. It was all about the judgment of other Christians. (ouch)

I’ve now decided to celebrate Halloween. We Trick-or-Treat, we carve pumpkins, and I don’t have a problem with my little girl attending the Halloween party with her dance class or at school. Our decisions about Halloween, like everything in life, we just handle on a case-by-case basis and let the Spirit in us direct us… not the opinions of others.

COMPLAINING CHRISTIANS

I’ve been a Christian for thirty-one years. I’ve been in the church my whole life. So understand, I say this with full understanding of what the church is all about and total love for my Christian brothers and sisters… but good grief Christians do so like to have something to complain about! Could we just for once let ourselves be known for what we stand FOR and not just what we stand against?!

What we stand for is love, joy, peace, caring for each other and being kind. I experienced these things fully as I looked into the eyes of an innocent child while giving them candy treats and telling them they were the cutest little vampire I had ever seen. It may sound like a joke, but it isn’t. My heart is sincere and bursting with love for God’s children. I could never sit in my house with the lights off ignoring the little knocks at my door. Christ’s love flows through my veins. I cannot ignore the opportunity to share His love that is literally inside of me pouring out. Fake Christians bring pain, destruction, and condemnation to this world while the true followers of Christ bring light, restoration, and hope in even the smallest of places, like a child’s outreaching hand.

Your work is to love God and love others. Let the Holy Spirit deal with the details.

PRACTICAL ADVICE FOR CHRISTIAN FRIENDS

Halloween is an amazing opportunity! Here are some fantastic ways you and your church can participate:

  • Host a Light the Night or Fall Festival or Trunk-or-Treat event. Start off with a short rally which could include fun music, puppets, prize giveaways, etc. Present a short message in an exciting, creative way to communicate that we do not have to be afraid because God is with us.
  • Set up some small carnival games in your yard and give candy away as prizes. You’ll want to get your family and some friends involved in this project!
  • Make hot chocolate and cider to give out to the adults and little bottles of water for the kids.
  • Make eye contact, smile, be kind.
  • Pray before going out that God will give you opportunities to show Jesus’ love in your neighborhood.
  • Just have fun! When you have God’s light in you it just pours out of you no matter what you’re doing. No need to go overboard with evangelism strategy; just be a nice person and a great neighbor.

THE BOTTOM LINE

Don’t be a lousy representation of Christ and ignore the little knocks at your door; buy some candy and love on His children on Trick-or-Treat night.

“I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.”
 
“Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”

Remember, the light shines brightest in the dark.

Christians who trick-or-treat | Should Christians Trick-or-Treat | Halloween | Christians and Halloween | Light the Night | Trunk or Treat

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19 Comments on Christians Who Trick-Or-Treat

  1. Abi Craig
    October 21, 2014 at 1:50 am (3 years ago)

    Amen! Don't know what else to say; you've said it well. Thank you.

    Reply
  2. Spaceships
    October 21, 2014 at 7:22 pm (3 years ago)

    Very well said!

    Reply
  3. Katie Hale
    October 21, 2014 at 11:47 pm (3 years ago)

    Very well said! Great take on the holiday from a Christian perspective!

    Reply
  4. Joy @ The Joyful Foodie
    October 22, 2014 at 12:49 am (3 years ago)

    I love this post so much! My history with Halloween is pretty similar, and you've put into words almost my exact thoughts on Halloween as they are today. I love picking out treats and toys to hand out because I want to be that friendly house with the awesome treat bags! There are many ways to be a light in your community, and I don't personally feel turning off your lights and avoiding your neighbors is one of them.

    Reply
  5. charles johnston
    October 22, 2014 at 1:39 pm (3 years ago)

    As a Christian I have always celebrated Halloween to the chagrin of my Christian friends. Love the ideas of being a light on this day and giving out awesome candy.. great perspective!

    Reply
  6. Ellen Oliveira
    October 22, 2014 at 3:32 pm (3 years ago)

    I grew up in a Christian home, although I'm originally from Brazil (This isn't a holiday there) after I moved at a young age I was taught not to join in in any Halloween celebrations. This is great perspective. As I get older and am now a mother of a 9 month old boy who's not of trick or treating age but I'm reading more and more about this and I don't see anything wrong with it. I'm glad you wrote this and I'm going to share it with my readers if it's okay? Thank you for being a light.

    Young Love Mommy

    Reply
  7. Chris Carter
    October 22, 2014 at 3:56 pm (3 years ago)

    Oh Carissa- how I LOVE YOU!!! Thank you for this. It's exactly how I feel. Exactly. I always say, lets not give Jesus a bad rap, okay? I too believe He would be out sharing His Light and embracing the spirit of community and imagination and the joy of children everywhere!

    Reply
  8. Prairie Wife
    October 22, 2014 at 4:19 pm (3 years ago)

    I am a Christian and my family and I Trick or Treat every year, not to mention deck the house out and decorate pumpkins. I think it all depends on what you choose to focus on as a family. We take it as a fun opportunity to gather in our small town, be with friends, and celebrate some of the best parts of being a kid-imagination and candy! Thanks for you post and sharing your view 🙂

    Reply
    • Diana Reyes
      October 30, 2016 at 4:28 pm (12 months ago)

      Great post! I totally agree

      Reply
  9. Samantha
    October 24, 2014 at 8:43 am (3 years ago)

    thank you for sharing these thoughts and practical suggestions!

    Reply
  10. Laura Perkowski
    October 25, 2014 at 7:47 pm (3 years ago)

    Be the light in the neighborhood…I love that! I have not yet come across any Christians who shun Halloween…but that could be because I hang around the more liberal Christian churches. There are so many ways that we can turn this into a "serving and loving others" holiday as you so nicely pointed out!

    Reply
  11. Lisa Speer
    October 28, 2014 at 7:10 am (3 years ago)

    I could not have said it better myself! He does not deserve a holiday! Thanks so much for linking up!

    Reply
  12. Dana Snowden
    October 29, 2014 at 8:48 am (3 years ago)

    My thoughts exactly. We have long been children's pastors and now we run a mission in the bad part of town. We never miss an opportunity like Trick or Treating to share the love of Jesus. Jesus would have definitely been passing out some candy if Trick or Treating existed in his day. Wonderful Post!

    Reply
  13. Amy Will
    October 29, 2014 at 5:35 pm (3 years ago)

    Great tips for being a light for the Lord! Handing out candy definitely is a great opportunity to be a blessing to the neighborhood!
    Amy @ http://www.livinglifetruth.com/

    Reply
  14. Unknown
    October 27, 2015 at 4:40 am (2 years ago)

    GOD bless you. I grew up in a Christian home also and we always celebrated. I don't look at it as an evil holiday, it's like Father's day for dad or Mother's day for mom, I just see it as Children's day for dress-up fun. It was always my favorite holiday, kinda still is. I love your ideas and appreciate your comments.

    Reply
  15. Dee
    October 15, 2017 at 7:14 pm (1 week ago)

    Certainly, no one will be condemned for celebrating all the ridiculous man-made holidays. However, Jesus issued a strong admonishment regarding how men choose to overlook the word of God in favor of their traditions (Mark 7:6-13). Nothing has changed. Many self-professing Christians are actually followers of the world (James 4:4-10). It’s evidenced by the go-along-to-get-along attitudes. Our love of Halloween is just another idolatrous middle finger to the Creator. We can’t make clean that which God considers an abomination. We think we (not Him) know what’s best for us. We just wanna have “fun”.

    Reply
    • Diane
      October 15, 2017 at 11:20 pm (1 week ago)

      Amen. Did deeper, Christians. I’d hate to think the only or best time we can love on kids and neighbors is during the only (repeat..only) holiday that happens to glorify witches, devils, ghosty spirits, etc. Doesn’t really matter how many little princesses and buzz lightyears you throw in the mix. It is what it is.

      Reply

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