Friday, June 25, 2010

The Fear of Looking Foolish

This week I have had the pleasure of being the make up artist for the show “Senior Follies” The show is down town San Diego at the beautiful Balboa theater. It has been an interesting week of tech and dress rehearsals. Last night was opening night. The cast is cramming six performances in one weekend! I have had the pleasure of interacting with the cast, doing make up, gluing on eye lashes, pinning wigs, running wildly backstage, bolting up a staircase helping dress a cast member and pinning on hairpieces backstage in the dark and hoping I get it on the performer straight. I have done this sort of thing for many years and for a variety of different shows. There is nothing more thrilling than live theater. However the amazing thing about this particular cast is that every performer is over 55 years of age. Most of them being in their 60’s and 70’s. The eldest cast member is 95 years old and you would never know it! I am inspired by these men and women. The perform for 2 hours straight without an intermission. They have 3 to 4 minutes for costume changes and I have never seen senior citizens hustle like these do. The women dancers have better legs than most 20 year olds, they tap and swing dance, and do the twist. The men croon like Frank Sinatra, and they serenade me while I am doing their make up!
I realized something about these people tonight. Although their bodies may be aging their spirits never have. Their spirits are as youthful as young teens. They have refused to quit. They enjoy their life and are living it out. They are not afraid of looking foolish, they didn’t let that fear rob them of the thrill of receiving their applause and standing ovations.
I believe that there is something in all of us that wants to do something crazy, but our fear of looking foolish keeps us from it. I like what Mark Batterson wrote about the fear of looking foolish in his book “In a Pit With A Lion on a Snowy Day” He said:
If you aren’t willing to look foolish, you’re foolish. Noah looked foolish building an ark in the desert, Sara looked foolish buying maternity clothes at 90. The Israelites looked foolish marching around Jericho blowing trumpets. David looked foolish attacking Goliath with a sling shot. Benaiah looked foolish chasing a lion. The wise men looked foolish following yonder star. Peter looked foolish stepping out of a boat in the middle of the lake. And Jesus looked foolish hanging half naked on a cross.
But that is the essence of faith and the results speak for themselves.
Noah was saved from the flood. Sara gave birth to Issac. The walls of Jericho came tumbling down. Benaiah killed the lion. The wise men found the Messiah. Peter walked on water, and Jesus rose from the dead.
Can I tell you why some people have never killed a giant or walked on water or seen the walls come tumbling down? It’s because they weren’t willing to look foolish.
God chooses the foolish things to shame those who think they are wise….Nothing has changed.