Sunday, January 8, 2012
Caring for Fools
“God takes care of fools and babies.”
That’s what my father says when he wants to own up to saying something silly. Dad believes that God has a special place in his heart for, and spreads out his mantle of protection over, those unable to fend for themselves. I believe it too, because the classifications Fool and Baby pretty much cover everybody.
I see it all the time. We all get silly notions into our head that are just really bad ideas. We see something. We get a hankering for it. We devise and plot toward it. And all the while a little voice – a smart little voice inside our head – whispers: “Bad idea. Bad idea. Bad, bad idea.”
I want a convertible.
You have three toddlers. Bad idea.
I want to move to Alaska to be with that girl.
Cold weather makes you sulk. Bad idea.
Sure, I can have a shot. It’s after 5.
You work until 7. Bad idea.
I’ve been chasing that guy for months. What do you mean something happened to his last girlfriend?
Bad, bad, bad idea.
And we whine when we don’t get everything we want. And we shake our fists when God doesn’t answer every prayer. And then, if we are honest, and examine our desires with a ruthless lens, it becomes painfully clear that a great deal of what we want is just plain wrong for us. Not to mention those around us
But we want extensively and with abandon. Our wants reach into every corner of our being. They fill us up to the point where we are unable to see the pitfalls, the path veering into the briar, the rocky chasm yawning before us. We are fools, so blinded by an Aurora Borealis of desire that we trip down the road, blissfully unaware of all the dark shadows looming on the way to our own personal Shangri-la.
But God – or an undefined higher power, or our higher selves, or whatever you believe has a better vantage point from which to view our fumblings – takes care of fools and babies. We don’t get what we want. We get what we need.