A Foolish Word | UMC YoungPeople
Connecting young people and their adult leaders to God, the church, and the world
October 2015

A Foolish Word

By Kyle Wyman

I have a lot of hang-ups in my faith. Mainly, I am a pretty logical, rational person. I tend to go with my head rather than my heart when experiencing the world. As such, I struggle with having faith because it’s utter insanity. Faith is complete foolishness. The notion of a God who is omnipotent/omniscient/omnipresent and is deeply concerned with our welfare makes no sense from a rational perspective. We live in a vast universe that might be among countless universes. We have been on this planet for only a short stretch in its long history, yet we believe God has ordained some special purpose for humanity that will end in a triumphal, consummate arc. I’m sure I will get some emails about this post, but it’s ludicrous! All Christians are madmen and fools!

“For Jews demand signs and Greeks desire wisdom, but we proclaim Christ crucified, a stumbling-block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, but to those who are the called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For God’s foolishness is wiser than human wisdom, and God’s weakness is stronger than human strength (1 Corinthians 1:22-25).”

Here’s something that’s even crazier: this is the good news! We abandon logic and materialism in favor of following a spiritual sense. We take what has been termed a “leap of faith” over an abyss of existential nothingness. As Kierkegaard puts it, “it is so hard to believe because it is so hard to obey.”

The comfort here is that the ways of the world are sensible, but just because things are sensible does not mean that they are right. In a world where one is judged on accomplishment, action, and competency, we preach a radical gospel of unconditional acceptance and love. Instead of judgment we preach grace. Instead of power we preach Christ crucified. We go against the fundamental principles of this world in order to proclaim a message meant for the betterment of the world.

The veiled blessing of this insanity is that our foolishness saves lives and offers hope for transformation and redemption. A materialistic, cynical perception of the world would lead you to believe that you are an insignificant speck, on an insignificant speck, in a small galaxy, spinning out of control in an endless universe among other universes. Yet our insanity and foolishness is as such that we believe we are God’s children, loved and cherished by God. We affirm this in the face of all challenges, even the depths of our own souls.

The invitation to join the Christian movement is one to participate in an unrelenting insanity. And this insanity reveals the true beauty in ourselves and this universe. I leave you with this quote from my good friend Paul,

Discussion Questions: How do you live out this madness each day? Share your faith with someone in your life, but keep reminding yourself as you share that it is utter nonsense.

To see more devotions from Kyle and our other Young Adult writers, or find our how you can become a writer yourself, visit our By Young Adults for Young Adults devotion page.