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"Insulted by a Clown" - by Rev. Weldon Bares

A street clown near Jackson Square in New Orleans’ French Quarter saw me coming. He held out his ragged old hat and said, "Hey! Do you want to buy a hat?" I shook my head and said, "No thanks." He said right away, "It's cheaper than Rogaine!"

Several people laughed. I also laughed, but deep down inside I was stunned. He really caught me off-guard, and I didn't have a reply. But the more I thought about it, the more peeved I became. I had been insulted by some guy wearing red make-up, a fake nose, big ears and floppy shoes. A guy named Bozo made fun of me, and I had no reply!

I guess it is better that I didn't answer him. A preacher shouldn't be trading insults with a French Quarter clown. In fact, no one should. The clown will always get the best of us. Always.

Jesus gave us a valuable word of advice. "But whoever strikes you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also." (Matthew 5:39) That day in New Orleans I turned the other cheek, not because I wanted to, but because I couldn't think of anything to say.

My prayer is that I will learn to intentionally turn the other cheek, not because I can't reply, but because I choose not to. My prayer is that I will learn to be more like Christ who turned the other cheek all of his life.

The next time that some Bozo lashes out at us, let's try to remember the right response. Instead of sinking to their level, maybe we can rise to the level of the greatest One who ever lived and turn the other cheek.

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