The Halloween Scripture

Posted on October 27, 2008 by

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Life keeps clipping right along, and I’m doing my best to keep up with it. Jeremy came up to visit last weekend. That was a fun change of pace. He brought Daniel up, so Alanna and Asher got to have a new friend for a few days. There was much playing of Magic, with the kids getting to have the cast-off cards to play with. I’m grateful to have such a good friend, and to have kept in touch through all these years.

Then last week was filled with all sorts of wholesome activities. Monday and Tuesday were class for me (as usual.) Wednesday night, Heather and I had an evening to watch Firefly. Then Thursday was the Elders Quorum temple night (which turned out to be me, my first counselor, and his wife, but it was a great trip nonetheless.) Friday was a Relief Society craft night that Heather attended. During that, I got together with a few of my guitar-playing friends and jammed the night away. My good friend Jason Schetzel has a very kid-friendly house, so we took our kids over there, and they whiled away a few hours in toy-enabled bliss while we explored a variety of ways in which to play the same four chords repeatedly. We were awesome.

Then Saturday morning was the ward youth temple trip, and Saturday evening and Sunday morning were stake conference. The highlights of conference were the priesthood leadership session, where the stake presidency gave counsel that was very useful for me in my calling, the stake patriarch’s talk on identifying inspiration, and the stake president’s talk, which was the most explicitly political talk I’ve ever heard over the pulpit.

Alanna and Asher are wonderful together (most of the time.) They started reading stories to me and Heather when it’s time for bed. On nights when Heather is the one putting them to bed, I’ll look in and see all three of them reading stories at the same time, because Alanna and Asher like to be read to while they’re reading. They have their favorite music, and enjoy holding hands and dancing together to it. And, of course, they love getting to spend time together at the park. They’ve both gotten to be good at climbing, and have fun on the rope net and climbing wall.

Dallas, Oregon is beautiful in the fall. In the parts of California and Utah where I lived, the trees only had two colors: green and brown. But here they do the whole “fall fireworks” thing, in a great array of reds, yellows, and oranges. The air is getting chilly, and Halloween decorations are popping up on people houses. I’ve long had an issue with Halloween just because it seems so tacky compared to the other holidays. Black and orange are a pretty awful color combination, and I don’t get too excited about bloody zombies on people doorsteps.

However, as I was walking the kids down to the park yesterday, I took some time to consider the other traditional Halloween symbols: spiders and spiderwebs, haunted houses, ghosts, cemeteries, and autumn vegetation — pumpkins and gourds. And I concluded that beneath the celebration of creepiness and fright that I dislike, there’s a more somber holiday that celebrates the empty, quiet places in life where people don’t go. So now I like to think of Halloween as the holiday that celebrates peace and rest. And here’s the scripture that I feel best describes it:

Isaiah 13:19-22

19 ¶ And aBabylon, the glory of kingdoms, the bbeauty of the cChaldees’ excellency, shall be as when God doverthrew eSodom and Gomorrah.

20 It shall never be ainhabited, neither shall it be dwelt in from generation to generation: neither shall the Arabian pitch tent there; neither shall the shepherds make their fold there.

21 But awild beasts of the desert shall lie there; and their houses shall be full of doleful creatures; and owls shall dwell there, and bsatyrs shall dance there.

22 And the wild beasts of the islands shall cry in their desolate ahouses, and bdragons in their pleasant palaces: and her time is near to come, and her days shall not be prolonged.
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Posted in: Church, Family, Musings, Nature