April 1, 2019
Stop deceiving yourselves. If you think you are wise by this world’s standards, you need to become a fool to be truly wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness to God. …. So don’t boast about following a particular human leader. For everything belongs to you—whether Paul or Apollos or Peter, or the world, or life and death, or the present and the future. Everything belongs to you, and you belong to Christ, and Christ belongs to God. (1 Corinthians 3:18,19,21,21 NLT)
“Even a fool can seem wise, if they keep their mouth shut” is one of my favourite proverbs. (Norm’s loose translation of Proverbs 17:28) It’s April Fool’s Day – a day of pranks and jokes whose historical roots remain a bit of a mystery. However, we all seem to enjoy a laugh at someone else’s expense –as long as no one loses an eye in the process.
The “Fool” is seen differently in Shakespeare and other literary traditions as a noble figure. The “Fool”, while often the comedy relief in a dark play, is the truth teller, wise counsellor and compassionate comforter to the troubled power figures in a play. It takes a “Fool” in the play to see the reality of life and speak truth to power.
It took a foolish child to say “The Emperor has no clothes” and it may take us being more child-like and “Fool-ish” to see truths about our lives, our country, our world and serve what is truly there. We are drowned in information and opinion coming at us at high speed, unfiltered and unqualified. Let’s be like Shakespeare’s “Fools” - seeking truth, offering wisdom and compassion in the midst of it all.
A Prayer for today
May God bless you with a restless discomfort about easy answers, half-truths and superficial relationships, so that you may seek truth boldly and love deep within your heart.
May God bless you with holy anger at injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people, so that you may tirelessly work for justice, freedom, and peace among all people.
May God bless you with the gift of tears to shed with those who suffer from pain, rejection, starvation, or the loss of all that they cherish, so that you may reach out your hand to comfort them and transform their pain into joy.
May God bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you really CAN make a difference in this world, so that you are able, with God’s grace, to do what others claim cannot be done. AMEN