I’ve got a confession: I love Halloween
Halloween invites us to imagine who we want to be and dress up as whatever we envision. This day gives us the permission to expand our ideas of ourselves and dress up as superheroes, royalty, animals, robots, and rock stars.
I still remember the year I went as a punk rocker. My mom, dad, and I came together to make the costume from scratch. A homemade costume is where the real magic happens. Creativity is unleashed and imaginations run wild. Halloween gives us the gift to imagine and then perform that imagination in some way.
Just days before this past Halloween I had the privilege of hearing Rev. Shari Brink preach on the “already/not yet” kingdom of God. I’ve been through seminary and have grown up in church. The idea that the kingdom of God is already here but not yet fully present is common language to me. But there was something different that grabbed me in Rev. Brink’s sermon. Whether she knew it or not, it was the perfect sermon to preach on Halloween weekend.
To understand the already but not yet Kingdom of God one must use their imagination. Creativity is a necessity. Just like on Halloween when a kid uses her/his imagination to step into the dream of a world that doesn’t fully exist, Christians use their imagination to wonder what the fully realized Kingdom of God will look like, feel like, and be like. When we witness relationships being reconciled and the church broadening her welcome to all people, we see the Kingdom of God at hand. This inspires us to serve at our soup kitchens, work to reduce the gap between rich and poor, and care for the earth, all as we point to the Kingdom of God that is not yet fully realized. As we use our imaginations we are propelled to serve our communities. These are glimpses of the Kingdom of God at hand all around us.