“Being a Christian is like being a pumpkin. God lifts you up, takes you in, and washes all the dirt off of you...Then He carves you a new smiling face and puts His light inside you to shine for all the world to see.” Unknown
Fall is one of my favorite times of the year! I always look forward to the leaves changing color, the crispness in the air, and everything pumpkin…pumpkin spice, pumpkin patches, and pumpkin carving. With the arrival of autumn, we look forward to Halloween family fun. Like any holiday, it is a perfect time to take pleasure in family traditions and making new memories. It is also the perfect time for families to be missional minded right where you live. It is one of the only evenings each year that brings most of your neighbors out of their homes with their kids and right to your door. What a better way to extend Christ’s love to your neighbors.
Here are four ideas to let Christ’s love and light shine.
Leaf Raking Party
Halloween week, invite your neighbors to join you in raking leaves for your elderly neighbors, any single moms or dads or any neighbors in need. Set a time & day to have everyone meet at your home with rakes and leaf bags. Plan how many homes you are going to rack for. After the last house is done invite everyone back to your house for a bonfire, cider, and donuts.
Treat your Neighbors
Have your family put together “treat” bags for your neighbors. Decorate simple brown paper bags and fill them with homemade cookies, brownies, Chex mix or caramel corn. Then as you “Trick or Treat”, give your neighbor their own “treat” bag and thank them for being your neighbor. You can also take these “treat” bags to your local fire station, police station or elderly facility. This is a good way to encourage a heart of gratitude instead of a selfish attitude of more candy.
Trick or Treat for a food bank or local ministry
Make your kids aware that there are people who are hungry and in need right in your own neighborhood and school. Remind them that Jesus calls us to help those who are in need right around us. Halloween is a great night to collect food items for your local church or food bank, instead of asking for candy, ask for a canned good.
Select an organization in your community who distributes clothes, eye glasses and/or food for those in need. Find out from any of these organizations ahead of time, what they would like to have collected. Then put together a flier with those items on it to pass out to your neighbors before Halloween night, instructing them to just put the items in a bag on their front porch. Then on Halloween night, take a wagon or wheel barrel with your kids to your neighbor’s homes to collect the items. And be sure to thank them for their donations.
Halloween Hot Dogs and Hot Cider
Lastly, getting everyone in their costumes, having a quick bite and getting out the door can be a bit crazy! So as a good neighbor bring your grill out from the backyard and grill some hot dogs, heat up some apple cider and pass them out to your hungry neighbors as they come by your house Trick or Treating with their kids. What a fun way to get to know your neighbors.
“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven”.
Don’t hide your light in your house this Halloween, but instead reach out with your family to your neighbors with one of the above suggestions. Make the most of this opportunity to let your light shine in your neighborhood this Halloween in Jesus name!