Thursday, October 31, 2013

Halloween from the the world, but not OF the world

This is one of my favorite pictures of my kids - mostly because it is so "natural" of them both.  I have to smile when I look at it.  I love the "junk" on the freezer behind Gwen and the kids art work hanging on the drapes.  Who would think that I would be missing those things?   And, when I look at Doug, all I can think is - on no, not that shirt!  He insisted on wearing that particular shirt, over and over and over - even after it was really small on him.  I don't know what it was about that shirt, but he loved it. 

These pumpkins were from a place that we STILL refer to as the "humble pumpkin patch".  Needless to say, it is no longer a farm since the suburban spread has taken over and the road is now lined with stores and houses.  But that spot was and will always be to us, the humble pumpkin patch.  Going to pick out pumpkins was a favorite event for me.  I think it is because I never did this as a child.  As a matter of fact, there are no pictures of me at Halloween and I really only remember trick or treating after I was in 1st Grade.  I remember one particular Halloween when we lived in Minnesota.  We went to about 3 houses - trudging through several inches of snow in our snowsuits.  And while I know that some people will cringe, my family did dress up and go trick or treating.  But I have to say that there were many years that we also had "Halloween Alternatives" at our church.  These were good times filled with great activities. 

You know, this is one of those times when there is a fine line between being IN the world and not OF the world.  I am happy that my children have chosen to become an influence to their peers and have remained friends with people that may not know Jesus.  Because, really, how else will these people ever get to know who Jesus is if they never get to experience his love through us?  I mean, really, didn't Jesus eat with all those "untouchable" people?  And go places that he was not supposed to (by religious teaching)?  So I am proud and very humbled by the grace that my children walk in, as they are out in the world.  And they are there because that is where Jesus has called them to be.  I am remembering that now as I am in a workplace that is filled with so many who do not know about Jesus.  I am so grateful that the Holy Spirit has promised to be that living water that flows out of us. 

So tonight, as I am passing out candy to the sweet young ones who come to my door, I will be greeting them with a smile and praying a blessing upon them. 

Jesus, thank you for your promises to us, to be with us and act through us.  Thank you for my children and the many, many lessons I have learned through them and the examples that they are to the world.  Holy Spirit, bless all of the children who have visited my home tonight.  Touch them with the knowledge of Jesus and the love of the Father.  Thank you for your great plan for the world, to show forth your glory!  Amen

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