I am having a hard time figuring out your target audience. Jesus providentially didn’t have me stop at that intersection, as I’d have probably gotten out and never made it where I was going, but the signs I got a glimpse of at 40 MPH were:
Christmas = Jesus, Easter = Jesus, Halloween = ???
Avoid any appearance of evil: (didn’t catch the rest of it)
It looks to me like you are trying to convince Christians to not celebrate Halloween. Thus making the busy intersection on Patton Avenue a less than stellar place to have the conversation.
I’d love to defend why my son is going to be dressing up (like a overly-cute giraffe) and asking the neighbors for candy this weekend, but your condescending signs that have about a 5th grade level understanding of Scripture make it difficult for me to get into the conversation. Honestly, I have to continually check myself not to just totally blast you in this conversation. I’m trying to love you.
Because, after all, we’re family.
I’m not mad at the participants in your little protest. This letter is not to them. I’m talking to the guy who organized it. The guy who came up with (or gave the thumbs-up to) the smug, arrogant slogans on the signs, and arranged the carpool.
What is your motive, brother? Do you want people to meet Jesus, or just become irritating religious punks? What would be “success” for your little rally yesterday? If people closed their doors, turned out the lights, and went to church on the only night this year that dozens of their neighbors are going to willingly ring their doorbell? Or would success be folks pulling over to join you in your crusade against candy?
Here’s the thing. I know that Halloween has some dubious underpinnings, and there’s a lot of occult things associated with it. I got that. But, to my knowledge, none of the 6-year-olds that are going to come to my house are going to head back home to sacrifice a kitten on their front lawn, or participate in a seance. And even if they did, I could never point to my own actions as anything better. There are two teams in this contest: (1) Bad, twisted sinners and (2) Jesus. I’ll let you guess which team you and I are on. For me to pretend that my not participating in the occult ritual makes me any better of a person is to totally miss the gospel.
I should further clarify. I am OK if you feel called not to celebrate Halloween (I too was that guy once.) What I object to is your trying to enforce what is clearly a personal conviction on others as though it were a biblical mandate, and printing signs and yelling on a street corner. If we’d put the same amount of time, energy, and money into really engaging the non-Christians in our neighborhoods with the gospel (that Jesus has conquered sin, death, and hell on our behalf), imagine the outcome!
As for us this weekend, as long as we’ve got neighbors coming to our house, we’re going to give them candy. And we aren’t going to skimp on it either. We’ve got Snickers. I’d love it if some of my non-believing neighbors’ kids were to head back home and say “That house over there gives out the best candy!” As Christians, we ought to have the reputation of being the sweetest. After all, our sins have been paid for by the most loving act in the history of the world.