August 31, 2012 - Friday of the Twenty-first Week in Ordinary Time

1 Corinthians 1:17-25
Psalm 33:1-2, 4-5, 10-11
Matthew 25:1-13

The foolishness of God is wiser than humans. Jesus Christ came down to earth and did not pursue power or wealth or anything else that people work very hard for. The weakness of God is stronger than humans. Jesus Christ, though he could have fought anyone and won easily, let himself be tortured and killed. Then he rose from the dead. We worship a God who was killed, not because someone was more powerful but because he was strong enough to survive death. We worship a God who was poor, not because he lacked initiative, but because he already owned everything.

The world says this it is wise because it knows how to get what it wants. In reality the world is foolish because it does not know what it wants. The world says that it is strong because it is able to defend itself from every threat. In reality the world is weak if it can really be so easily threatened. We Christians reject the foolishness and weakness of the world. We know what we want, and we are going to live forever and there is nothing that anybody can do about it.

However, because we are human, we are susceptible to foolishness. We are susceptible to the goals of the world even though we already have greater promises. We are also susceptible the foolishness that keeps us from reaching our goal. In other words, there are two ways to lose a race: by being too slow and by running in the wrong direction. In other words, if we were trying to build an airplane, neither the people who never get around to building an airplane nor the people who apply great intelligence and effort to building a boat are very helpful. The first kind have the right intentions, and the second kind are admirable workers, but neither one accomplishes the goal.

So let us be foolish in the eyes of the world because we do not pursue its goals, and let us be weak in the eyes of the world because we do not defend ourselves from its threats, but we need to learn from the world about pursuing our goal with every bit of effort. Just as the world tries to be rich and powerful, using every last bit of intelligence, energy, and strength, that is how we ought to be working to love others and to love God.