Our family celebrates Bethany’s life everyday, but Oct 31st and Nov 1st, we think about her all day. She was a big proponent of Halloween! Not the creepy scary part, mostly just dressing up! Some children grow up and put away childish things like make believe but thankfully, she never did. Halloween was a highlight of her year because she could use her imagination, dress up and also get candy! For a few years, Dave and I thought we shouldn’t celebrate a holiday that had become a glorification of Satan and we stopped the children from dressing up. For Bethany, it was traumatic! To know Bethany is to embrace drama!
Eventually, we relented and she dressed up for Halloween the rest of her life. Of course, this wasn’t the only day she used her make-believe skills. We have many pictures of her in dress up clothes, even during college! I was reminded of her yesterday, while headed to see our grandchildren in their costumes. As I left the house, a ladybug, one of her favorite things, showed up on our steps. When we got to their house, another lady bug showed up on their steps. Maybe this is ladybug season, I don’t know, but the miracle in all of that is that I noticed them… a small miracle of noticing.
Today is All Saints day. This is another day that we celebrate Bethany, along with all those who are now in the presence of Jesus. I’m grateful for this feast day to call out the names of those who are no longer with us on this side of eternity. Along with make-believe, Bethany loved holidays, (holy days). Today is a Holy Day. In many churches, they will ring bells as they call out the names of those who have moved into glory this year. I prefer to celebrate every day, the fact that one of my children is with Jesus!
This morning, I read that Pope Boniface IV formally started, what would later be known as All Saints Day on May 13 in 609 AD. It was eventually moved to November 1st by another pope. How interesting that Bethany’s life, death and after-life, are connected to so many holidays! In 2013, the year she died, her birthday was on Easter, her death was on Ascension Day and her burial was on the original All Saint’s Day.
Today, on this Holy Day, we are celebrating Bethany, our holiday girl, her life and her eternal life with Jesus. This is not a story of make-believe. May all who read these words, find the real living presence of Jesus in your life, just as she did.
Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints.