Halloween was a favorite time of mine when I was a child. We would smear some charcoal from the grill on our face and go out begging for candy as a hobo, not very original but extremely inexpensive. Some of my friends would have elaborate costumes and cool bags to collect the goods, but we always used a pillow case. The end result was the same. CANDY! Well, except for the occasional dreaded popcorn ball that would always come out of it’s wrapper and get sticky goo all over the important things like Tootsie Rolls or Reese Cups. Of course we were never allowed to eat the apples! “Someone may have put a razor blade in that," my Mom would say. Then the reality that it was time to go home, when people ran out of candy and they would hand out coins. Ugh! Not even quarters, but typically pennies and nickels. Hey, it was Franklin in the late 60’s!
As beggar’s night quickly approaches I have a suggestion. What if we all went outside, sat in chairs and waited for the children and their families to come by. We could actually talk to the people in our neighborhoods and get to know them if just for a moment. Have some laughs and appreciate the kids as they wear their outfits with excitement. I think God would appreciate us “Loving our neighbors” and sharing good will to those around us.
I am well aware that some will take offense to the idea of a pastor participating in a night that is in some places associated with Hallo’s Eve, though I am fine with a few barbs from those who don’t know me. Truth is, my family and I have been doing this for years. Just getting to know the people we live around.
So this year, don’t turn off the lights, or put lawn chairs in front of your walk way. Don’t set a bowl out for children to be on the honor system. Hand out candy with a smile and soak up the special moment of getting to know your neighbors. Just simply delight in the little robots, princesses and maybe a few hobos!
I won’t need my pillow case this year, but I always have a bag of snickers in reserve!