I’ve never liked the typical April Fool’s Day shenanigans–it always seemed a bit malicious, if not downright cruel, to set up “jokes” at another’s expense.
But I’ve learned to appreciate, and even celebrate, the hidden wisdom of The Fool. And it started when I was, of all things, an older student striving NOT to appear foolish among the young, conservative, and oh-so-wise undergrads at a small, elite Christian college in Tennessee.
The course: Jesus in the Arts.
The culminating project: an interpretation of Jesus, and my response to Jesus, through an artistic medium.
My soul’s choice (over my mind’s protest): dance.
Why? To break my addiction to appearing wise, strong, and “cool.” To declare in a way beyond words my humble, heartfelt embrace of God’s Own Fool and my own inner fool. To allow myself (as I knew the Master Jesus would) to risk criticism, disdain, and possibly horrified rejection by those young, conservative, religiously wise undergrads (liturgical dance was practically an oxymoron around there!).
To really, literally, STEP into the unknown–with no certainty of what would happen next. With only the seed of faith that I was, for some unknown reason, CALLED to do this, for a greater good I could barely perceive. And with the (utterly unseen) support of the One Who called me.
So I prepared, and trusted, and still feared, and finally STEPPED anyway. Imperfectly, but with all I had, I danced my allegiance–handmade FOOL badge slapped over my heart as talisman and proclamation–as Michael Card sang:
So surrender the hunger to say you must know
Have the courage to say, “I believe.”
For the power of paradox opens our eyes,
And blinds those who say they can see…
So we follow God’s Own Fool,
For only the foolish can tell.
Believe the unbelievable,
Come, be a fool as well!
And, like the Fool Jesus and the Fool of Tarot, I stepped into a miracle.
The undergrads erupted into applause. They followed up with thoughtful questions and lively, positive discussion. The professor took me aside after class to tell me that he wished he had scheduled my presentation first, “to raise the bar for the other students.”
And he then invited me to assist him in teaching a class period devoted to Dance in Worship.
The Unseen Support had risen to uphold my stepping feet and send me onto a path of affirmation, validation, and soul-deep JOY.
I’ve done a lot more Following That Fool and Stepping Off Edges since then. I have to say, it doesn’t necessarily get easier. But the Universe and my Guidance now have a well-established track record of Unseen Support Made Manifest–though only AFTER my foot goes off the edge…
So on April 1 especially, I invite you to look again at The Fool.
Do you still see what conditioned, conventional “wisdom” sees–a blithering idiot headed for disaster? That says you’re stuck, peering through the lenses of FEAR.
Ask the Universe to swap out those old specs for the sparkling new lenses of FAITH, and you’ll see a blessed adventurer headed for miracles.
Now, take that deep, cleansing breath of Trust and then–just STEP…
And tell me–right here in the comments!–what miracles rise up to meet YOU.