Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Halloween and Christianity, Part Five: Let's Have Some More Fun!

Since reading part four, you have had a chance to consider how you can make those ideas your own. Today, I will end the series with thoughts on heroes, music, party planning, and family unity.
One of the best things you can do as you anticipate All Saints Day is: Get to know your heroes. The days are shorter and the weather cooler – it's a perfect time to read and watch movies that build and inspire faith.
My children loved reading together as a family every October. We chose a new biography each year and watched movies highlighting faith and courage. There are even more books available now and movies galore. Some of my favorite movies are: Luther, Amazing Grace, The Hiding Place, Gifted Hands, Something the Lord Made, Chariots of Fire, Shadowlands, Soul Surfer, Home Run, and China Cry.

A few people whose stories have deeply affected me are: Amy Carmichael, George Washington Carver, Joni Erickson Tada, Corrie ten Boom, Granny Brand, Dr. Paul Brand, C.S. Lewis, John Wycliffe, Jim Elliott, Joanne Shetler, Florence Nightingale, and Peter Marshall.

They overcame doubt, poverty, prejudice, disability, lack of education, fear, and financial ruin. Each story is an inspiring piece of our heritage and encourage us to keep fighting the good fight. This year I'm reading about Brother Andrew and vignettes of other tenacious believers.
Music is another important tool for good in this season. There are some terrific contemporary songs about faith and courage as well as in the hymnbook under the heading of All Saints Day. And listen to your local Christian radio station, it’s inspiring stuff! Play a game with your family this month as you travel to and fro. See who can identify lyrics that challenge us to carry our faith to the next generation. Keep score and award the winner!
And speaking of games. Throw an All Saints Day party on November 1 and have some fun. This can be an exciting climax to the season. Our family played a game called: “Who’s Who in Christian History.” We told our guests to come prepared to share a sentence or two describing a Christian from the Bible or more recent history.
Here's how to play: Each player gives a short description of the person's life; write the name of their person on a strip of masking tape. Stick a name on the back of each player and let them try to discover who they are by asking other players yes or no questions about the name on their back. (For example: Am I in the Bible? Am I a woman? Did I invent a lot of stuff made from peanuts? Did I get put in jail because I was translating the Bible into the people’s own language?) Then you can award prizes for the first ones to discover their identity!
There are lots of other games to play that spotlight faith and courage. And of course, no party is complete without food. Your feast can be as fancy or casual as you like. We always offered to make the main dish, drinks, and dessert, and had our guests bring side dishes. You might even choose a dish you only have at All Saints, like turkey for Thanksgiving or ham for Easter.
Finally, if you are married, I encourage you to make sure your husband or wife is on board with your decision about All Saints Day. If you want to celebrate All Saints Day, but they are not ready yet, it can sabotage your kids' enthusiasm and divide your home. The best way to win him or her over is to respect their feelings and not push your ideas on them.
Pray for God’s Spirit to speak to them, and do what you can to celebrate our fabulous Christian heritage:
  • learn about those who have gone before us
  • talk it up with your kids
  • be an example of courage and faith

Celebrate All Saints with friends at a time that doesn’t conflict with your mate’s plans. Hopefully, as they see your excitement, you will convince your partner into rejoicing in the holiday with you.
Many blessings on you and your household as you lift up the name of Christ this exciting fall season.  Whatever you decide to do, stand boldly for Christ and, “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good” (Romans 12:21).

#allsaintsforgottenholiday #betterthanhalloween #allsaintsdaytoday #christianfamilyfun #halloweenandchristianity 

1 comment:

  1. Beth--
    I appreciated seeing the names of people who inspired you. The over-comers. My story, "Cimarron," is also about a woman who overcame much. We all face difficulties in life and we need these examples to remind us that we, too, can come thru whatever life throws at us.