This weekend on many of our to-do lists is to finalize that Halloween costume for Trick or Treating next week.  The streets will be filled with superheroes and princesses and ghouls, all seeking sugary treats from their neighbors.  I personally love Halloween.  I love seeing the neighbors, and I love the fun of dressing up.  But this year, as we have been discussing options for costumes, it struck me that maybe I should take a closer look at the characters that my kids want to imitate.  Just what are their values, what behaviors do they demonstrate that encourage a life of loving God first and others second?

I have started looking deeper at the characters that my kids are watching.  Do these people work out conflict in a loving way or do they simply beat each other up?  Do they obey their parents and other authorities?  Do they show kindness by putting others before themselves?  Are they self-controlled or hot-tempered?  Are they sarcastic or genuine?

Some of the characters out there for kids are great role models, others not so much.  So what message am I sending to my son if I let him dress-up like certain, more violent, superheroes and then chastise him for being too rough?  Or I allow my daughter to dress like certain rebellious princesses but then put her in the corner for not obeying?  Scripture says:

“Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are his dear children.” Ephesians 5:1 NLT

I think God programmed children especially to be imitators, and I think God delights in the joy that children have in dressing up and visiting their neighbors on this holiday.   I do not think that all superheroes and princesses are bad.  I just want to make sure that I look beyond what is popular to see the morals of the people that my children are imitating and make sure that we are first and foremost trying to imitate the values of God.

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