Don't open that,” he said angrily. “That's just those crazy Christians trying to force their beliefs on you.” And with that, he gave me the candy that was attached to the little small kids coloring book and threw the book in the trash. That was my first experience with anyone sharing the gospel on Halloween.
My little eight-year-old heart was crushed. We went to church each week, but my family seemed to be against Christians. It was confusing. It took a long time for me to learn that my parents loved a higher power that they believed in, but were hurt by other Christians and so it was hard for them to grasp onto what they call “the whole Jesus thing”.
They weren't the only ones. It was only a week before that my friend’s mom had told me, “you know, if you and your family had prayed more, your brother would have been completely healed from cancer and he wouldn't have lost his leg.” Then a week later she tries to give me a book about how to accept Jesus into my heart.
My eight-year-old concept of Christianity was heavy and dark. I had the weight of the world on me. I was given a twisted version of the Gospel and because of that I felt that I actually had the power- and the responsibility- to get rid of my brother’s cancer away and I had failed.
I dug into the trash and found the book later that night. It was actually a really cute kids' book they explained Jesus in a way that I could understand. But it was tainted with condemnation and an introduction to cold Christianity.
BE SURE TO PIN ME FOR LATER!
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Sharing the Gospel on Halloween, Is it a good idea?
Here’s the thing: this woman had the absolute right idea, but did it in the absolute worst way.
By no means did I share that story to say that you shouldn't share the gospel on Halloween. Actually, I'm about to talk about why we should do the opposite and the ultimate best way to share the gospel on Halloween.
The important thing to note though is that there are right ways to share the gospel on Halloween and wrong ways, just like there are right and wrong ways to share the gospel.
But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect 1 Peter 3:15 NIV
Sharing the Gospel on Halloween: Wrong Ways
There are many ways we can have the best intentions for Halloween and share them in all the wrong ways.
That woman that told me that we caused my brother to become an amputee, she wasn't a terrible woman. She was a woman that was desperately trying to do the right thing with a lot of misinformation. She came from a church that was so heavily focused on numbers and evangelism that she never really learned how to talk about Jesus to others. I went to her church out of curiosity later in life, and it talked more about how to prevent Hell than how to serve Jesus.
When I felt the weight on the world at eight years old after talking with her, it must have been nothing compared to the weight this woman felt. This woman actually felt the weight on her to convince people about Christ. She thought it was in her power to convince people. In reality, all we can do is lead people to Christ and then let Jesus to the rest.
Here are three ways that you want to make sure to avoid when sharing the gospel on Halloween:
- Humble brags
- Deep, philosophical Biblical explanations
Forcing the Gospel
No one likes to be forced into accepting Jesus. It simply just does not work that way. Usually, it has the opposite effect and gives Christians a stereotype that we are are judgmental. If you find yourself trying to “shove” the gospel at any point, you are most likely going the opposite direction of the 1 Peter 3:15 verse.
The only way we can glorify Jesus is if we make it less about us and more about Him. Jesus came down and made himself nothing, and we must do the same. Make sure that you are not boasting about a Christian life but instead explaining your life through glorifying Him.
“He must increase, I must decrease.” John 3:30
Deep, Philosophical Explanations
Sometimes, this one can be the hardest. It is easy to give people handouts full of Bible verses and deep thoughts, but Bible verses don’t mean much to people that have not yet experienced the Bible.
The Bible is much more than just a book, it is a library of the Living Word. And if you have someone coming to your door on Halloween that does not yet know Jesus, then they can’t even begin to fathom what the “Living Word” means. They will instead read it just like any other book. In order to lead people to Christ, we need to start with meeting people where they are.
Sharing the gospel on Halloween: Better Ways
Here are some tips to keep in mind while sharing the gospel on Halloween in better, more graceful ways.
- Walk the walk
- Honor, praise, and raise
- Remember the goal, not the role
Walk the Walk
Imagine a family comes up to your door on Halloween. By what is on your door, and the Bible verses in your house as you open the door, it is quickly obvious to them that you are Christian. If you are so kind that it surprises them, they will definitely remember “that Christian family down the block that was so kind and gracious”.
This is the “caught not taught” philosophy. This is the idea that we are going to win more people to Christ simply by trying to be Christ. There are way too many times that we try to convince people about Jesus instead of just being Jesus. If we can do our part as Christians to just walk as Jesus did, we may get people so curious about what makes us the way we are that they have to check out more about Jesus.
Honor, Praise, and Raise
I know Halloween is such a short time to talk with people, but it is amazing what you can do in such a short amount of time. I call this the “honor, praise, and raise” method.
Honor is doing exactly what walking the walk above describes. Be honorable to people. Welcome them graciously to your home, even if it is only for fleeting moments.
Praise them. Compliment anything you see. Tell them that they are obviously great parents because their kids are so polite. Maybe say to that worried mom that you love how her daughter is spunky and that makes a great leader someday. Tell the broken parent that their family is beautiful.
After you praise them, raise them up as you send them to the next house. Wish them a blessed day. Or say you hope to see them again soon. Anything that will raise them up.
By doing these three things, you will have families that leave with happiness and confidence. It will be the type of happiness to make them stop and wonder, what was different about that family?
Related: When Christians Don't Do Halloween
Remember the Goal, not the Role
Keep in mind that you are a small part of God’s huge and awesome plan. All we can do is be honored to be a small step in someone’s walk with Jesus.
Sharing the gospel on Halloween means you will most likely never know how that person’s story with Jesus ends. You’ll have no idea how many lives you have touched, and how many lives you have saved, until you get to heaven.
But none of that matters. A huge part of sharing the gospel means you have to be content with not knowing the end result. All that matters is that you stepped up to the challenge instead of hiding away.
The Ultimate Win-Win for Sharing the Gospel on Halloween
Those ideas above are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to sharing the gospel on Halloween. Those were tips and tricks for when someone comes up to your door. And what an honor from God that we get an opportunity each year to have people come to our door!
However, to share the gospel on Halloween, we actually have even more opportunities than just to be the person at the door!
When I was looking up ways for Christians to celebrate Halloween, I found the ultimate win-win. This is a way to share the gospel whether or not you choose to partake in Halloween yourself.
This idea is called reverse trick-or-treating.
The idea is almost as simple as it sounds. Instead of going door-to-door and taking something from each house, you can go door-to-door and give something to each house. There is really no way to get more Christian than that. In a world that demands so much from people, we get an opportunity to give to those instead.
This could be as simple as making cookies for people with little notes or making some other things with an invite to church. Whatever idea you come up with, it will be a good one because you will be doing God’s mission of reaching out to broken people who are local to you.
This is also an amazing way to get to know people in your neighborhood and lay the groundwork for further conversations about Jesus.
If your kids feel left out on Halloween, let them do this reverse-trick-or-treating. Teach them about how you send them out into a world of sin every day, not just on Halloween, but they get the opportunity to be who Jesus wants them to be instead of hiding away.
Other Ways to Share the Gospel on Halloween
Beyond reverse trick-or-treating, there are other ways that you can go on sharing the gospel on Halloween. Here are a few to keep in mind:
- Introductions, invites, and follow-ups – Get to know your neighbors and set the groundwork for establishing relationships and further opportunities for deeper discussions
- Invite cards – create some little invite cards (or ask your church if they have any) to hand out to people. You may have some people that have been debating about church and just need the extra push
- Be the house that offers a “pit stop” – Instead of candy, set up shop outside your home with a cookout or food instead of candy. Have a bunch of chairs and give a place for people to take a break. If you do this annually, it will become a tradition and people will know where to expect the “pit stop”. Have drinks for the kids and the parents, and use the opportunity to talk to people and get to know them more
- Pray over people – Especially with the above opportunity, use this as a time to try to pray for anyone in your neighborhood that needs it. You may have people that walked away from church and have not been asked in years to be prayed for. You will never know the difference you are making in someone’s life.
- Water bottles with info – Place the information about your church around a water bottle and hand them out to people as they trick-or-treat.
How do you feel that you can bless others on Halloween? Let us know below!