Halloween. My least favorite non-holiday holiday. It isn’t because I’m opposed to children asking for candy door-to-door, or because I’m particularly opposed to dressing up as various characters, or even because it seems to celebrate the dead, the dying and the darkness that seems to permeate the world I live in.
No, it’s not all of those reasons. Although there is a part of me that wishes it were because those are better reasons than the one I have. I don’t like halloween because when I was a child, my younger sister and I were “forced” to attend a Harvest Party at a church across the street from our house.
My sister and I, as I recall, were both feeling sick. I vividly remember telling my mom that I wasn’t feeling good. It was all to no avail. I wore my new Raggedy Ann mask and costume. I remember the mouth was just a little hole and I loved sticking my tongue through it.
Anyway, at the party my sister and I managed to stock pile a boat load of candy before we went over to sit in a chair along the wall. We were sitting there not hurting anyone until my sister leaned over and vomited all over me.
I can’t help but think of that every halloween.
I remember as a little girl learning that November 1 is all Saint’s Day. The day to celebrate the saints who have gone before. As a Protestant, I have not celebrated the day, but the thought of celebrating those who have lived,breathed and beat the devil’s system by the way they lived their life.
I think of Paul, Peter, David, Abraham, Stephen, Deborah and a myriad of others, Billy Sunday, D.L.Moody, Charles Spurgeon, Charles Wesley, John Wesley, Blandina, Denisa, Cecilia, Felicitas and too many others to mention. And while they aren’t mentioned in the Hall of Fame in Hebrews 11, I do believe they are included in the great cloud of witnesses that surround us as spoken of in Hebrews 12.
I think of the verse from Hebrews 11 that says in part, “the world was not worthy of them…”. I find something within me rising up saying “I want to be like them.” Not because they have a day set aside to celebrate them, but because they lived life to the fullest and gave the supreme sacrifice. The world was not worthy of them because they changed the world. They lived above the world’s level. They lived in such a way that made them not worthy of the world and the world definitely not worthy of them.
I have to wonder how my life would be changed if I lived that way? How would I change the world?