Redeeming Halloween: Going Batty! …by Susie

Welcome back to the RaisingDeepRoots Redeeming Halloween : Costume Devotional Series!  In this post we are GOING BATTY!!!

For 3 years in a row, by God’s grace, I managed to find at least one devotional activity to go along with the Halloween costume of choice for my boys.  The year they decided to be matching bats has been my most favorite – hands down.  Are they not the cutest little bats you’ve ever seen 🙂  Personally I think they are adorable!

batty brothers

batty brothers2

In my last post I shared how, oddly, Halloween has become one of the most rewarding times in our family’s home devotional life.  While my boys were still young, Halloween became symbolic of the tension I felt of being in this world but not of it.  (John 17:15-16)  You can read more about our INSULATE not ISOLATE parenting conviction Here if you are interested.  I’m convinced that it was this tension that lit a fire under me to muster up some extra energy in October to be much more intentional with our family devotional time.

Pause to hear this my sweet, worn out and fatigued mom.  I know there are PLENTY of seasons and reasons for why some of this stuff is just plain hard or impossible to pull together.   So let’s just dump any feelings of guilt or regret and maybe just pick out one thing here  or from a past Redeeming Halloween post that looks fun or even remotely doable and just go for it.  I fully believe that anything is better than nothing!. That’s why I’m sharing with you, That it may bless you!   Hopefully some of the leg work I did in years past will give you some tools to work with.

As with any of our seasons of more intentional devotional time at home, we always make sure we have a healthy balance of FUN and FORMATION.

FUN = playing together for the sake of just playing and enjoying time as a family to strengthen family bonds and make some awesome memories.

 FORMATION = building on those fun family times through planned and intentional teaching moments

Bats are a favorite Halloween theme so even if your kids didn’t choose bat costumes to wear, I think you’ll have plenty of reasons to join us in Going Batty!  I’m going to dive right into the devotional first this time since it was mostly a time of play and fun anyway with just a short lesson in the end.  That way, if the thought of crafts or any cooking gives you hives you can just read about the devo idea and skip the rest!  And I’ve decided to shorten my notoriously long posts by dedicating an entire post to some book suggestions alone.  You’re welcome 🙂

DEVOTIONAL:  Learning to listen for God’s voice based on 1 John 4:1

“Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.”

 The boys loved this one!  The great thing is that they still ask to play it. (SCORE!)  They put on their bat costumes and “flew” out to the back yard so we all could play a slightly modified version of the popular Echolocation game.  You can find instructions on how to play HERE.  We blindfolded them and told them we were playing echolocation tag.  The main point was to use their bat echolocation skills to listen for the right voice.  My husband played the Hooting Owl – a dangerous voice of one coming to eat them!  ack!  I was the tasty Buzzing Mosquito!  Mmmm..   They were blindfolded and had to run after the buzzing mosquito but avoid  the hungry hooting owl.  They tried to tag me  – the tasty mosquito and make sure they weren’t tagged by Dad – the hungry owl!!  We had a total blast, running around and buzzing and hooting!  {Note: your kids are blind-folded so…you might want to move the patio chairs out of the way. Just a suggestion.  Not that we had a mishap or anything ;-)}  Once we were finally out of breath from running and giggling so much, we sat down (oh and applied some ice to a poor child!)  and we talked about a new word for the boys – discernment. Because discernment is a spiritual discipline that we continue to nurture and develop long into adulthood, I was eager to have an opportunity to introduce the concept of listening carefully for God’s voice to them even at this tender age.    Just as 1 John 4:1 tells us, there are many voices (friends, teachers, experts, ideas, messages etc.) out in the world , and as followers of Jesus we need to learn to ‘test’ them and determine if they speak life-giving words of truth.  Some voices are well-meaning friends who intend to offer us good words, but what they share is not in keeping with God’s truth.  Some voices are really from the evil one who intends to deceive us on purpose.  How do we discern truth?  By practicing our listening skills 🙂

 1) Does the message match what we know the Bible teaches?

2) Does the message point to loving others as Jesus loves others?

3) Does the message make our “tummy” feel bad or feel ok ( introducing the concept of our conscience and being at peace in our spirit)

Obviously this isn’t something we teach just each once and check it off our discipleship topic list.  I pray we have opportunities to visit this over and over again.  We’ve already played the echolocation game several times over in the past few years and each time it gives an opportunity to talk about listening for God’s voice and discerning if a message is good like the buzz of a yummy mosquito or dangerous like the hooting of a hungry owl ready to eat us!


I”m pretty sure this was the year I discovered Pinterest and of course quickly collected a bunch of “Going Batty” pins.  Click HERE to see my Pinterest board of bat inspired fun.

My kids love to paint pumpkins and so making these bat pumpkins really got our family FUN off to a good start!

batty mantle piece

I had never decorated our mantle piece for Halloween before but I’m loving the pumpkins and orange candles – the bats add a nice touch no?

bat pumpkins 2

A close up of the pumpkin bats!    Find the instructions at

And tell me where is the fun if you can’t have Bat themed food!  These were the hit of our Halloween night – because you know, like, we didn’t get more than enough chocolate and candy as it was !!    Thank you for the adorable bat cookies!

{P. S.  speaking about Halloween candy, please take a moment to read this post about making informed choices about our Halloween Candy.   A must read!!!}

oreo bats

In my opinion, no theme lesson is complete without a trip to the library to collect piles of books to match the lesson theme!  Stay tuned for our next post sharing our favorite “Going Batty” books.

May this Halloween and the theme of bats offer you and your family opportunities to practice your listening skills so that we all may learn to discern the voice of our Lord!


3 Responses to “Redeeming Halloween: Going Batty! …by Susie”
  1. says:

    Love it! And I can hear the excitement In your words. You crack me up too. Thanks for the laughs, the ideas, the encouragement and the gift of sharing in your family memories and fun. Love you Susie! Carrie



  2. Linda Frender says:

    Loved your post! Miss you guys. Maybe we can get jake over on a weekend for a play date soon!

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