Archive for November 2013

Halloween’s Darkness Can Be Scary, But…

November 20, 2013
Butler Halloween Outreach

Jesus is the Light of the World!

Those who walk with Jesus shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life! Yes, sometimes we can forget, in the immortal words of Larry the Cucumber,  that “God is bigger than the bogeyman.” Halloween is sometimes a Christian bogeyman. Once it used to be mine. We hid our kids inside our churchy Harvest Celebrations, and once we joined some friends who were tiptoeing through Calvin’s Tulips, in  “Reformation Day” festivities.  Then as I grew in faith, I began to agree with this writer at the Gospel Coalition who suggests that, “instead of fleeing the darkness in fear, we should view Halloween as an opportunity to mock the enemy whose power over us has been broken.”

Sharing the Gospel in a winsome way is a wonderful opportunity to mock the enemy on Halloween. As these photos illustrate, I do a variation of “Trunk or Treat”, decorating my car’s outside with all manner of ghastly things — spiders, snakes, dragons,skeletons, witches, ghosts — with a glow-in-the-dark sign saying “The darkness can be scary, but…”

Butler Trunk or Treat Halloween Outreach

I had to coax some kids to open the trunk!

The kids have to navigate past all kinds of warning signs, some have to be cajoled to pop the trunk open, but in a classic bait and switch, they are surprised to see a beautiful glowing, smiling sun shining radiant sunbeams in a rainbow of colors, (Eric Carle style, of layered tissue paper on mylar, so I can backlight it)
And another sign painted in rainbow colors says:

“But Jesus said, “I am the Light of the World!”

Those brave children who have navigated past the terrors on the outside can reach into the trunk to get yummy candy. I try to share my joy, and tell them as much as I can of the good news of Jesus’ power over death in his resurrection. One Halloween, the children and I made an art project of this, creating pop-up cards, with gorgeous blazing suns inside, and the full text of John 8:12 emblazoned all around it in the best italic they could manage. It was very fun to pass those out to trick or treaters.

I would like to get this tract done professionally,with a full Gospel message included on the back, to pass out in bulk. Any graphic artists are welcome to steal this idea — and I would love to see your productions. Post a link below!

Gleaning Some Good Words — “Morning by Morning”, Spurgeon, 8/1

November 10, 2013

To increase the genetic diversity of U.S. corn...

Let me now go to the field, and glean ears of corn.”
Ruth 2:2

Downcast and troubled Christian
come and glean today in the broad field of promise.
Here are abundance of precious promises,
which exactly meet your wants.
Take this one: “He will not break the bruised reed,
nor quench the smoking flax.”

Does that suit your case?
A reed, helpless, insignificant,
and weak, a bruised reed, out of which
no music can come;
weaker than weakness itself;
a reed, and that reed bruised,
yet, he will not break you;
but on the contrary, will restore
and strengthen you. You are like the smoking
fire: no light, no warmth, can come from you;
but he will not quench you; he will blow with his sweet
breath of mercy till he fans you to a flame.

Would you glean another ear?
“Come to me all you that are weary
and burdened, and I will give you rest.”

Public relations of high-fructose corn syrup

Take another ear of corn:
“Fear not, you worm Jacob,
I will help you, says the Lord and your Redeemer,
the Holy One of Israel.”  How can you fear
with such a wonderful
assurance as this?
You may gather ten thousand
such golden ears as these!

“I have blotted out your sins like a cloud,
and like a thick cloud your transgressions.”
Or this, “Though your sins be as scarlet,
they shall be as white as snow;
though they be red like crimson,
they shall be as wool.”  Or this,
“The Spirit and the Bride say,
Come, and let him that is thirsty
come, and whosoever will
let him take the water of life freely.”

Maize for popcorn, cultivated in Hungary, prod...

Poor timid believer!
Gather them up,
make them your own,
for Jesus bids you take them.
Be not afraid, only believe!
Grasp these sweet promises,
thresh them out by meditation
and feed on them with joy.