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Wednesday, March 29, 2017

A Lenten Healing: 40 Graces for Forgiveness (Day 25: Foolishness)

I could write a book on this one. Heck, a series of books. I’ve even offered to be a keynote speaker on the topic.
No takers yet, though.
If you really want an in-depth meditation on foolishness, hit Proverbs. (31 chapters, 31 days in a month—coincidence?) There are 71 references to fools in Proverbs alone. I had a hard time picking just one for today.
No one wants to think himself a fool, but when I refuse godly or even plain-common-sense advice, justify myself, argue against Scripture, get complacent about my faith or behavior or attitudes, talk more than I listen, mock others, tolerate sin in my life, brag about anything, hide anything, or seek to deceive anyone, I wallow like a fat, happy pig in the muck of my own foolishness. And we know what pigs are usually destined for, right?
MmmmMMmmm, bacon.
I had a conversation recently with a woman who hates men. I don’t think I’m overstating it. She had nothing good to say about the male gender, and refused my arguments that there are actually a lot of good men around (my husband and son, whom she knows, included). She’s obviously been hurt, and is propping up her own gender with outsize pride while wholly denigrating the other. I said to my husband, “I hope she meets some men who can change her mind.” Hubs replied, “She probably can’t, with that filter in place.”
That’s what foolishness is, isn’t it? A bad filter over our eyes that alters the way we see ourselves and others. It can make us prideful or unhealthily ashamed. Like a funhouse mirror, it exaggerates certain things while minimizing others. It distorts reality.
I already know that some of the things I’ve held grudges over are really, honestly, pretty trivial. But because of the filters of foolishness I had/have in place, the offense seemed much greater than it actually was. And had I taken off the filters altogether, I could probably have dealt with the offense simply by brushing it away, like a gnat.
Foolishness may be one of unforgiveness’s closest buddies.

* * *

The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but a wise man listens to advice.
 -- Proverbs 12:15

* * *

Please show me what filters I’m still wearing that I shouldn’t be. What do I keep over my eyes that makes it harder to see the light and discern the truth? What kind of foolishness do I entertain in my life, and why have I clung to it so tenaciously? Help me throw off my foolishness and be a humbly wise woman who forgives before even realizing she needs to.

40 Graces for Forgiveness: a Healing Journey is now available in print. $6.49 at

With questions for personal meditation and space for journaling, this 40-day devotional series offers a deeper look at Christ's command that we forgive. For a personal pilgrimage, or as a resource for group Bible study,40 Graces for Forgiveness: a Healing Journey invites seekers of forgiveness and healing to the path on which God longs to meet us all. $6.49 at Find out more about 40 Graces for Forgiveness: a Healing Journey.


  1. The worst thing my father could call a person was a fool. I am so sorry that the woman you mention has rejected HALF of the human race. Keep writing, Maria. These posts are so good.

    1. Thank you, Martha. This has been a really convicting study for me. I only hope I'm changed when I'm finished with it.