|JANUARY 3, 2011 --
As we begin this new year together, let us consider that faith matters. “A cheerful heart has a continual feast.” - Proverbs 15:15. The thing about approaching any problem with genuine good humor and fun, as we do when playing a game, is that it brings us into the present, opens our intuition and creativity, and gives us the inner freedom to improvise. This deceptively simple wisdom frustrates sports writers who want the team strategy before the big game. “We are just going to go out there and have fun,” football players say. They know fun has a creative power all its own. Go forth into the unknown area, handle situations with unexpected grace, wit and joy, playing full out. We call this experience fun. Fun produces a unification of mind and body, fun is not trivial; it is essential.
I found out how essential it is when I was very young. I was scheduled to do a reading and when I saw the audience, I said not me and headed for the door. I was free to say “no”, but not yet free to say “yes,” to welcome the possibilities in the unknown situation with a spontaneous spirit of good nature and fun.
The exuberance and generosity of God’s whole creation empowers an upbeat, playful spirit. “I tell you, do not worry about your life,” Jesus told his fearful disciples.” Consider the lilies of the field, they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you even Solomon in all his glory was not clothed like one of these.” Here is a first century version of “let go and let God.” We let go and worry and make friends with the unknown by letting God and His upbeat playful lighthearted Spirit fill us, even with good old saint’s preserve us- fun.