Palm Sunday on April Fools’ Day?: Strange yet not so strange

Palm Sunday 2012 occurs on April 1--April Fools' Day.

The story is told of a man who wore a sandwich board sign in New York City, as he walked the streets. On the front written in bold letters was this statement:  “I’m a fool for Christ’s sake!”  People passed and chuckled or snickered, but they changed their expressions when they turned around to read the back of the sign which asked, “Whose fool are you?”

 This story shared on April Fool’s Day brings to mind the words of the Apostle Paul who reminds believers: “We are fools for Christ’s sake.”

The lyrics to the chorus of the popular song “Everybody Plays the Fool” also remind us of this truth:

Everybody plays the fool sometime

There’s no exception to the rule

Listen, baby, it may be factual, may be cruel

I ain’t lyin’, everybody plays the fool

 

Since everybody plays the fool sometime in life and in love, many have decided that, like the gentleman in New York, we will be a fool  for Christ’s sake, since the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger that men,” so say the Scriptures (1 Corinthians 1:25).

 Most amazingly April 1 or April Fool’s Day occurs this year on Palm Sunday or “Passion Sunday”, the beginning of Holy Week, the solemn period leading up to the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ, celebrated on Easter. Most assuredly here is a situation where we note the distinction between the ways of men who purport themselves to be wise, and the ways of God who uses foolishness to confound the wise: 

For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 19 For it is written:  “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.”

The whole idea of being a “fool for Christ’s sake” on April Fool’s Day brings to mind this poetic self-portrait:

        My Madsong

We are fools for Christ’s sake,

but you are wise in Christ!

We are weak, but ye are strong!

You are distinguished, but we are dishonored.

   I Corinthians 4:10

 

 I am stark raving mad as a gitsy;

I am insane and crazy as a loon.

Though my voice is stronger,

My lyrics are wronger.

My madsong is plainly out of tune

(But all the while I smile).

 

I am a rare and bizarre exception

Who loves to laugh outloud and cry.

My mind borders hysterical;

Each day I see a miracle.

I live on earth with my home in the sky

(And all the while I smile).

 

I make my point with certainty–

Another fact which clearly shows

That I am deceived or naiver,

With the mind of a child, a believer

Who knows that he knows that he knows

(Why all the while I smile).

 

So I still dream my dreams and live

My life in such a simple style.

The world wants to eat me for supper,

But I just laugh and keep the upper

Hand and keep walking mile by mile

(As all the while I smile).

 

They call me kook, fanatic and fool

Because of my peculiar knack.

Folks think me still odder

Because I talk with God, my Father,

And furthermore, yes, He talks back

(And all the while I smile).

From Stone upon Stone: Psalms of Remembrance          

 The following music video by Destiny House International is entitled “The Foolishness of God is Wiser than Men.”

All of this is food for thought on Palm Sunday, April Fool’s Day, 2012.

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