Yesterday on my run I got to see all the halloween setups in peoples yards. Some were adorable with little pumpkins and lights with inviting homes for little sweet pooh bears and bunnies to come and get candy. But others, I was appalled, to say the least. I guess when you have a child, things stand out to you way more. There were some yards that made me shiver as the staring eyes of some of these scary scary whatever you want to call them things just laughed evil. I thought this was for the kids. I won't discard the whole holiday, but seriously. Our church is having something WAY better and more fun than trick or treating anyways. I mean, who gets to ride a pony on Halloween? Zion Christian kids do. =)
When we were walking down the street the other day, Michael had me hide Matthew from a few yards. And as I also saw my nephew staring at one of the evil skeletons. As we directed him away, I had to think more and more about how images stick in our kids, in our minds.
I think about how Matthew recognizes his room, how he knows my face and his dads face, how he recognizes his grandparents he sees once in a while. How he watches a car go by like he remembers watching cars go by before, and I know, without a doubt, these little brains are capturing and storing away images in their minds all day long.
I believe in letting Matthew see the world, meet different kinds of people, experience nature, a good education, and feel loved on like crazy. So as Matthew's parents I believe we have the responsibility to protect his mind. And loving him like crazy means protecting his baby mind from images that he doesn't need to have popping up in his dreams at night, such is evil lawn characters on Halloween, sleezy girls on commercials, scary characters on movies, etc. Our children will experience enough heart ache and times when they are scared of storms, a movie, friends, etc, why not prevent what I can of those images when I can when they are this young, that really have no good purpose in looking at anyway?
Scripture says, "whatever is pure, whatever is noble, whatever is right, think about such things." Those are what i want Matthew to have running through his mind. I want him to think and dream about his parents hugging each other, his favorite food (banana), the puppy he pet, the swing he loved, not the creepy monster, his parents yelling, or the half naked girl on T.V.
My sister and I were talking the other day about how thankful we were for our childhood and all the amazing life experiences we had. We were told a lot growing up that we were "sheltered" because we couldn't watch certain movies, listen to certain music, and play hours on end of video games (unless we were sick and could play Mario as much as we wanted. Loved Mario). I always laugh because experiencing those things really don't make life any more awesome. I was so thankful my parents protected our minds from those things, and instead filled our minds with love for other races and people groups, with creativity, the outdoors, adventures, lots of play, travel, and to know we could try anything we set our hearts out for. I am so thankful for that and I hope we can do the same for our kids.