The 75th Anniversary of the Martyrdom of St. Maximilian Kolbe
The foolishness of following Jesus
When one begins to follow Jesus one comes face to face with foolishness.
Because it really makes no sense to turn the other cheek, it too will only get slapped as well.
It makes no sense to go and sell everything you have and give it to the poor because then you will be poor.
It makes no sense to be the least and the last because then you get the scraps and the leftovers.
It makes no sense to fast when a healthy diet is so important to one’s health.
It makes no sense to be chaste when it “feels so good” and one is “in love.”
It makes no sense to pray when there is so much to do.
It makes no sense to remain silent in the face of accusations because then you will be found guilty.
It makes no sense to carry the cross because then you will die on it.
Nothing about following Jesus makes sense.
This is the foolishness of God of which St. Paul speaks.
One must first allow oneself to become a fool in the eyes of others and oneself if one wishes to be His disciple.
Everyone will point out your foolishness.
Family members and friends.
Even people who are deemed “religious”
Especially the devil who will tempt you with logic and reason as he tempted Jesus in the desert.
For to a man of the world, the devil makes a lot of sense.
If you are hungry why not eat!
If you have power and money think of all the good you can do!
Do not worry about God, worry about yourself.
Peter saw the foolishness of following Jesus and so like all the other disciples and anyone else who had an ounce of common sense, he denied that he ever knew Him, lest he be crucified with Jesus.
And so how often do we deny Knowing Jesus so that people will not think we are foolish.
Scientists, politicians, academicians and others deny Jesus so as not to look foolish, or medieval.
Even people who are religious will deny Jesus when the cries of the crowd to “Crucify them” becomes too loud.
Only a fool would follow Jesus.
Only a fool would sell all that he has and give it to the poor.
Only a fool would deny himself and take up his cross.
Only a fool would forgive 70 times 7.
Only a fool would claim to know Him.
And Maximilian was the greatest fool!
He stepped out of line and took the place of a condemned prisoner.
And the last known words that he said were,
“I am a Catholic Priest!”
These words most certainly condemned him to death.
But The Foolishness of God, however, is wiser than men! 1Cor. 1:25
Prayer : The Wisdom of the world is foolishness, and the foolishness of God Is Wisdom. May I seek to be a fool in this world, but Wise in the eyes of God.
Meditations and Questions
1. How does the Gospel appear foolish?
2. How does the world appear wise?
3. How was Maximilian foolish in the eyes of the world but wise in the eyes of God?
4. Am I fool in the eyes of the world?
5. Do I seek to appear Wise in the eyes of the world and others?