Yeah, what kid doesn’t love candy? I loved it so much growing up that my parents could never bring it into the house. They knew that I’d find a way to eat it all.
That is why I loved Halloween. All I had to do was to knock on a neighbor’s door and say, “Trick or Treat” and they would give me a Snickers Bar. This was the greatest idea ever. Apparently it only works on October 31st though. I tried it on other nights and most of my neighbors just told me to go home.
Halloween in our house was made even more special by my parents. Not only did we get to run around the neighborhood after dark collecting candy, but we also had my favorite dinner. Actually, it wasn’t dinner it was brunch.
Every Halloween, my mom would pull out the griddle and make eggs and pancakes. I loved pancakes almost as much as I loved candy! She’d always say, “I wonder who will eat the most pancakes tonight?” Now it became a contest. As much as I tried, I could never eat as many pancakes as my brothers.
After dinner we’d put on our costumes and go out to collect our sugary loot. Along the way, my friends would begin devouring their candy. I remember looking into my bag, and although I wanted to eat my candy, I was too full from my pancakes.
I never figured out my parent’s strategy until I was older. One day it dawned on me that they fed us pancakes on purpose. They knew if we ate enough pancakes, we wouldn’t make ourselves sick by eating all of our candy.
My parent’s wisdom was to fill us with the good stuff so we wouldn’t have a desire for the stuff that would really make us sick. Now, I know that pancakes doesn’t rank high on the health food charts, but compared to a pound of chocolate, it is pretty good.
There are a lot of things in this world that can make us (and our kids) sick, not just physically, but emotionally and spiritually. It can be hard for kids to have the will power to resist destructive things that look so good. Our job as parents is to protect our kids from things that can cause them harm.
We need to fill our kids and our own lives with good stuff! Kids do well in homes where love, joy, fun, and laughter abound. Modeling solid values and sharing spiritual truths can help kids resist those things that can look so good on the outside, but are so destructive on the inside.
I think that is why the Apostle Paul encouraged the church in his letter to the Philippians to focus on the “good stuff”.
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you. Philippians 4:8-9
Today, focus on the good stuff. Fill your mind with thoughts of things that are pure, lovely, admirable, praiseworthy, and excellent. Leave no room for the destructive and harmful things that the world puts in your path everyday. Put this into practice and the God of peace will be with you!
By Pete Larson
Husband to Lynn
Father of two
1 Corinthians 13 Parenting Team Member
Executive Director of Family Fest Ministries
Meet Pete at the HeartCORe Conference in Minneapolis on November 1! Register today for the conference!