How you spend Halloween may reveal a good deal of what you really think about the Christian life.
There is a chain of inseparable realities in our local churches that shape the way we look at the costumes shuffling down our streets and knocking on our doors on All Hallows Eve. The first reality, as Jeff Vanderstelt explains, is the fluency of gospel proclamation in our communities of faith. We want to be churches that proclaim the gospel to one another, believers to believers. And then, building off this reality, it’s inevitable that we begin to share the gospel with those who don’t know Jesus.
The more we proclaim the gospel to believers, the more likely we will proclaim it to unbelievers.
It is easy for us to get locked into Christian bubbles and soon lose contact with those who desperately need to know the good news. And it’s easy to mistake the Christian life to mean separate from the world instead of separated for God’s work in the world. But Christians, says Vanderstelt, are truly called to move toward need, and be in the middle of the brokenness. We are not of the world, but we are sent into it.
Like Jesus, we are called to “move into the neighborhood” (John 1:14). We can take the “normal rhythms of life and do them in such a way that the world takes notice of our generosity, love, and care.” And that might start with Halloween, as Vanderstelt explains in this three-minute video: