Friday, October 28, 2005


Halloween is coming and as a Christian, I sometimes shy away from it. Pshaw, you say. It’s a harmless kid’s holiday. Let them dress up in ghoulish attire, roam the neighborhood and take candy from strangers. It’s all fun, right? What I’d like to ask my fellow Christians is, what are you doing to show the love of God in a practical way this Halloween? How are you shining a light in the darkness? Are you locking your door and turning out the lights? Can you be found slumped on the couch, watching “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” and eating Hostess cupcakes?

What scares you the most as a Christian? I find more often than not it’s not the evil spirits or the boogeyman, it’s evangelism. Most people would rather cross the street than witness to someone. Some people’s throat constricts when an opportunity to speak about Jesus pops up. Why does the idea of sitting down with someone and sharing the gospel scare us into silence? Are we so scared of rejection and ridicule that we would rather zip a lip?

In the Old Testament, Moses was scared speechless. He even told God he wasn’t a good public speaker. (Exodus 6:30) God had every faith in him delivering his message to the Egyptians, but Moses was so freaked, he asked for his brother-in-law Aaron to be his mouthpiece. (Exodus 4:30) God said OK to that. (But you know…if God can create the world with a word, why do you doubt He will give you a word to speak to someone?)

Did you know that you have your own Aaron to speak for you? No, it’s not your brother-in-law that always eats the last piece of pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving. Jesus said that he was sending someone else, the comforter, the Holy Spirit to dwell in our hearts. (John 14:26) He is our Aaron and he speaks for us when we have no words.

I have a dear friend Allison who is very in tune with the Holy Spirit. Sometimes I am amazed what comes out of her mouth when it’s time to speak to someone. But if I ask her an hour later if she could give me a synopsis of what she said, she gives me a look that says, “Yeah right, I’ll just hit replay.” It’s amazing that it’s always what the other person needs to hear.

So, how do I step out of my comfort zone this Halloween, you ask? Might I suggest starting small, like actually offering treats to those kids that make the trek to your front door? What if those treats had a cool cartoon message about God not being scary? What if you offered chilled water to the parents guarding their kids on the walk, and have flyers from your church with upcoming family events? What if, when it’s 9:30 at night, and that knock comes at the door…you find a lanky teen dressed as a chainsaw murderer holding a bulging pillowcase…waiting expectantly for any leftover candy…Stop and tell him: “Dude, Jesus loves you.” Then, let the Holy Spirit speak through you and tell him why. What’s so scary about that? In the end they aren’t rejecting you, they are rejecting Christ. And that’s the scariest thing to me.

"For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when He comes in His glory, and {the glory} of the Father and of the holy angels.” Luke 9:26

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Getting Lost

My son started high school this year. He was a little worried about getting lost on campus. I encouraged him to use his map, ask people for directions and move quickly so he wouldn’t be late for class. He has made it through so far as “the new kid” and even made a few new friends.

God has a way of talking to us with our life experiences, and He tapped me on the heart again with this one. If my son had relied solely on his map, he would’ve made it eventually to his classes. But he might’ve been late or missed out on a shortcut provided by a new friend. He could’ve thrown the map away and just relied on the good nature of the kids that had been there before, but without the map—how many times would he be sent the wrong way either by mistake or by people picking on “the new kid”? And if he didn’t move quickly, how many detentions would he receive for constantly being late for his classes?

What God was asking me was, do I neglect to read my Bible for direction when faced with choices in my life? Do I chuck the map and ask friends, family and Dr. Phil for advice? How do I glean the good information from the psycho-babble of the day when facing troubles? Or, do I have stunted spiritual growth because I do not add fellowship and works to my Bible study? Am I missing out on a new friend that could give me insight to my walk? What about indecision, am I just missing opportunities and blessings that were around the next bend by staying put and pouting?

God encourages us daily to write His word on our heart. (Proverbs 7:3b) Before you take a step out the door today, read your Bible for direction and insight. Use prayer to reset your compass and stay tuned in to where He wants you to go. Talk with friends and family who have been down the same road you are on. They’ll know the shortcuts and potholes, and you might even find an opportunity to share your walk with them. And by all means, don’t dawdle. Indecision is disobedience.

Feel free to get lost, but take your map and your loved ones. Because being a Christian means you’ll eventually make it Home, no matter where in this world Life takes you.
Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path. Ps 119:105