3/26/08

Don’t Be a Fool!

I met my husband-to-be on April Fool’s Day in 1973. I teased that he was my “April Fool,” but Bob is wise in more ways than one, and he excels in practical leadership wisdom.

Although evidence of “jesting” dates to China in terms of acting and entertaining, Roman comic actors were probably the forerunners of Europeans “jesters.” In the Middle Ages, English court jesters trained to be “fools” for the enjoyment of royalty—similar to our modern-day comedians. Also like today’s comedians, they often employed satire to poke fun at people, and with relative immunity. Though we don’t know when April Fool’s Day began, April 1st–coinciding with the nearness of spring—evolved into a frolicking day for pranks and jokes.

I’ve never wanted to be a fool. In fact, I’ve prayed for wisdom since early childhood, but it was only recently that I thought through the sources and implications of foolishness. Proverbs 1:7 says, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.” So then, what is the beginning of foolishness? Wouldn’t it be the arrogant, self-sufficient attitude that says, “I don’t need God”? We are training to be fools when we begin to order our lives as if there were no God. We don’t look to him for direction or help. We don’t bother to pray; we just decide. Making choices without God is foolish. In one version of this verse, we read, “Respect and obey the Lord! ... Only a fool rejects wisdom and good advice” (CEV). Proverbs 1:29-30 speaks of the person who spurns (turns away from) God’s reproof and correction. That’s certainly foolish. We are also foolish when we “fear man” rather than God. When we fear man, we exalt and trust the opinions of people, and seek the acceptance of people, more than reverencing and trusting the Lord.

Being a fool, in the biblical sense, is not an occasion for laughter. The Bible says, “Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise … do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is” (Ephesians 5:15, 17, NIV).

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hello, dearest Dawn:

This morning I checked into your "Heart Choices Ministry" and was blessed by your messages. I didn't know you had met our son on April Fools Day. But, in my opinion and that of Dad's, you and he (your Bob) made excellent CHOICES. We love you, M & D Dub