The Great Mix: Part Two
In my last post, I tackled the controversial subject, “Should Christians celebrate Halloween?” That really was only meant to address a symptom of something that runs much deeper.
I had some wonderful comments and conversations take place as a result of the last blog. I know it is a difficult subject for those on both sides of the issue.
Just as a follow up, for my dear friends who dressed up and passed out candy, or went “Trick or Treating” in their neighborhood, or even went to their local church’s harvest celebration, I pray you had a wonderful time with your family and friends, and your light shined bright.
For my dear friends who did want to hide in the dark, because of what the day evokes as a result of what you went through at some point in your story, I pray you felt the loving arms of God wrapped around you. I understand. There was a time I felt the same way.
To my friends who judge those huddled in the dark, if you experienced what they did, you may be there too.
So, why the part two?
As I was processing my own feelings, triggers, etc, I realized something.
All the years I did participate and allow my kids to participate on the levels we did, I did so, because I was trying to please people.
I sought to please my husband, my kids (what kids don’t want to dress up and get candy), my friends, and my church leaders. I didn’t want to go against the flow, because quite frankly, I did not want to be rejected. I wanted to fit in with everyone else, and make my family and others happy. I’m not saying anyone else out there has participated for that reason, but for me, I did.
I wanted to be light and desired to bless others at our harvest festivals, but deep down in my gut, I didn’t feel for me that being apart was what I was supposed to do.
So, I went against my convictions. At times, I even apologized for them.
See, for me, “The Great Mix” goes far deeper than whether I celebrate or not at Halloween.
It’s this pull I feel to get along, go with the flow, to not rock the boat, to be a people pleaser.
It’s also this numbness to things, things that are completely counter to God’s word. It’s this mix of good and evil, white and black, until all you have is a convoluted grey.
I’m not talking about a religious list of dos and don’ts. I’m not talking about religion at all. In fact, I am the one who now likes sparkles in my hair, has a tattoo on my wrist, loves to dance around my kitchen to the Greatest Showman soundtrack, and even enjoys a glass of wine from time to time.
I’m talking about matters of the heart.
The more in love I become with my Bridegroom, Jesus, the more I long to be like Him, to not do anything that would be dishonoring to Him.
It’s not about climbing a mountain of works to get to Him. It’s not about teetering on a tightrope of law to sit in His presence.
It’s about a passionate lover’s pursuit. He is the passionate lover pursuing my heart. The more I experience that love, a love that I don’t even have words to express, the more I want to make His heart happy. I don’t want to dishonor Him. I want to please Him by my response to His love.
My biggest problem with mixing good and bad: a little Christianity, a little witchcraft, a little hatred, a little slander, a little elitism, etc. is that it dishonors who God is in His essence. It misrepresents Him and presents a clouded view of Him. He is all good. He is all holy. He is all love. He is all justice and righteous, and He is all mercy. When I mix, I am playing with unholy fire, and I will get burned.
In the 1924 Olympics: Eric Liddell, a devout Scottish Christian claimed to run for the glory of God. Upon arriving at the games, he was faced with a decision. Run his favored race on Sunday, which went against his conviction of honoring the Lord’s Day or forfeit his dream of the gold medal, becoming a dishonor to his country.
He chose to give up the race he excelled in most. This wasn’t because of some religious duty. He ran to glorify God, and deeply felt if he comprised in this way, it would bring dishonor to the one he loved. So, he made the extremely difficult choice to cancel his race, placing His love for God above the love of his country and glory for himself.
In our day and time, how many would think that a foolish decision?
In the Bible, Saul, the anointed king of the Jews, went to seek the counsel of a witch, because the Spirit of God would not answer him. Out of desperation, he sought out a counterfeit. In the same time frame, David, the promised King who, being threatened to be stoned by his own men, set his heart to seek the Lord. Within a few days, Saul was dead, and David was the new King. Their choices demonstrated the condition of their hearts.
In writing this, I’m not trying to tell anyone what his or her convictions should be. In fact, I do believe they will change, and should grow deeper as we grow in intimacy with Him.
Out of zeal for His Father’s house, Jesus drove the moneychangers out of the temple. I believe the closer we get to Him, His zeal will rise up in our hearts, driving out those things that seek to defile our inner temple.
Our choices merely reflect our heart.
My prayer for all of us is to be so overwhelmed with the love of the God, that we can’t help but glorify Him by our actions, that there will be a holy fire in our bellies that will not tolerate a mix of good and evil in whatever way God leads us in that, and that we will return to our first love, being hot for Him, and not lukewarm. No spewing here.
Who knows though, maybe next year; I will boldly have our light on handing out candy and prayers. If the Lord leads… 😉