"We are fools for Christ . . ." - 1 Corinthians 4:10a, NIV
Today is April Fool's Day. I have heard that some have chosen to cancel whatever April Fool's Day celebrations were planned because of the pandemic. I can understand that. With the seriousness of all that's going on, it just doesn't seem appropriate for now. Last week a friend of mine emailed that he had watched our first online worship service. Because he doesn't go to our church, it gave him the opportunity to experience our worship service. He talked about how he liked the service. But then he added one suggestion, that perhaps the service needed some humor. I must admit his comment caught me a little off guard. Because of the seriousness of the pandemic -- the loss of life, the spreading sickness, and the loss of jobs -- humor just didn't feel right to me.
Now I certainly believe humor has its place, and sometimes it helps us get through difficult times. On the other hand, I can remember wanting to make a joke when things were very serious, probably because I was uncomfortable with what was going on. Also, I am not sure if humor is really my forte. I've always admired preachers who seemed to have the ability to entertain with the timing of a comedian. Humor can also open us up and laughter can break down barriers. I guess I will just leave that kind of humor to those who do it well.
When Paul says in his letter to the church at Corinth that "we are fools for Christ" -- he is not saying that we are court jesters or clowns. In Paul's day the dominant worldviews were Greek, Roman, and Jewish. Paul was fluent in all three. But from a Greek perspective, the idea of Jesus as the Son of God who comes in the flesh and dies on a cross seemed foolish. But for those of us who are "fools for Christ" -- it is God's true wisdom and the way of life!