The Real Scariness of Halloween

For women who struggle with overeating, the goblins and ghosts of Halloween don’t hold a candle in terms of scariness to the terror of having to be around loads and loads of candy! For many years, I quite piously refused to participate in handing out candy on Halloween, but my actual reason had nothing to do with the less-than-godly origins of the holiday. I knew if I had candy in the house, more than half of it would go into my mouth and not into the treat bags of small children.

But right now I have two large bags of the good stuff (you know, the name brands in “snack size,” not “bite size”) on a shelf in my kitchen, and although I opened one bag yesterday to nab a miniature Twix®, I know the bulk of the bags’ contents will still be available for trick-or-treaters later this month.

What changed? Why are those tasty chocolaty goodies safe on my shelf? Why aren’t they calling my name every minute I’m in the house with them?

Understanding the grace of God was the key to the freedom I now enjoy – freedom from secretly eating and replacing bag after bag of Halloween candy, freedom from hating myself for not being able to concentrate until I’d had a few more of anything “bad” that was in my vicinity, freedom from banning all “forbidden” foods from the house.

For sin shall not be your master, because you are not under law, but under grace. Rom. 6:14

It took me many years to come around to understanding and really believing the truth of that verse. As long as I was “under the law” regarding my eating (what to eat, when to eat, what to weigh), sin continued to master me. I was constantly struggling with the temptation to break the laws regarding chocolate, fried chicken, breads, and every other food I thought was fattening.

It took a huge leap of faith, but when I gave up the laws and started to rely on God’s grace and Spirit actually enabling me to live a “self-controlled, upright, and godly” life in “this present age” (Tit. 2:12), the power of sin was broken. I was free to eat what I really wanted to eat and to pay more attention to my physical hunger than to the cravings that arose in response to my emotions. I was free to stop measuring my worth by my weight and therefore ended up naturally landing at a healthy (but not fashionably waif-like) size that for years has fluctuated very little, regardless of the season.

Ask God how His grace can free you from your Halloween candy fears.

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