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Life in all its fullness...

I wonder what you’ve got planned for today…something that involves a bit of fun I hope.

Today is the 1st of April: it is National Sourdough Bread Day in America, Philip Schofield’s 57th Birthday and typically the day – the morning particularly – when people have fun as an April Fool.

We have not advocated the darker side of April Fools Day within our family but I was interested to see a large children’s charity in America are using it to be a ‘Fun Day’ for all. April Fools Day is argued to be associated to Noah’s Ark and the date Noah sent the dove out before the waters had gone down. An April Fool then is someone who is sent on a task that is silly to do. (An owner of a hardware store I knew in Norfolk told me a story of a Work Experience student who was sent from the office over the road to buy a ‘long weight’ – an old joke meant to mean a ‘long wait’. The hardware owner smiled knowingly at the innocent boy, taped together two fishing weights to make them ‘long’ and invoiced the estate agent across the street £25…we all had a laugh in the end!).

But today I want to draw your eyes to the example of David, King of Israel and mighty man of God.

I am reminded of the story of him returning the Ark of the Covenant to Jerusalem and how David as King led a procession through the streets dressed as a priest rather than a king, dancing and singing with musicians rather than processing like a solemn king might on an important day. When he is criticised he rightfully replies – It was God who chose me to lead, I have danced in front of His people and I will make myself more undignified than this…’

It is in 2 Samuel 6. And to end the day, as the Ark is placed in the tent it is to be kept: David celebrates with offerings of thankfulness and well-being, David blesses the people in the name of the Lord and give food to the gathered people (bread, meat and a cake of raisins) and then all return to their homes.

Rather than a serious occasion, King David realises that God calls us to a life of fullness and joy, an abundant life as Jesus calls it (John 10:10b).

I wonder what that day will be like for us – when the restrictions are lifted, when hugging and celebrations can start again, when churches throw open their doors and church bells ring out, when parties can be thrown and gifts given without leaving them on a doorstep and ringing the doorbell.

That will be a fun day, a day of celebration, a day of smiles and celebrations.

So in preparation for that day, let’s have some fun today. Be creative, be imaginative, smile and find something to make you laugh: Watch a favourite comedy programme, listen to a favourite comedian, search for the funniest meme you can find and share it: This morning someone wrote 

‘Because I’m in isolation I finished 3 books today…and believe me, that’s a lot of colouring!’

Do something today that lifts your heart a little higher, that brings back the joy that you have to come when all will be well. Find something you can share that reminds everyone of the abundant living we are called to, share a surprise gift with a friend or neighbour, smile and wave at a stranger who needs a smile, and get your party outfit ready because soon it will be our day to dance in the streets.

Have a fun day.