Good News and Better News… October 23rd, 2017

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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Yesterday we celebrated with the folks at the Belleview United Methodist Church. Well, at least with those who were willing to celebrate.

Of course, that’s always the case.

Jan and I are just “two drifters, out to see the world.” And of course, there’s an awful lot of world to see. But there are some common themes.

The religious system that has taken hostage the church of Jesus Christ somehow or another has convinced itself that it can build a congregation by using prayer, Bible study and worship. Even though diminishing numbers in the pews contradict this fact, those who have spent more time in seminary than in the mainstream of America continue to blindly lead the blind right into the ditch of oblivion.

Fortunately, we have the example of Jesus, who offered people abundant life, full joy and peace of mind. You remember his words, right?

“I have come to give you life and it more abundantly.”

“I have come that your joy might be full.”

“I bring you peace–a peace the world cannot give.”

What would happen if we actually started focusing our message, our ministry, our efforts and even our artistry toward abundant life, full joy and peace of mind?

Aren’t these rather desirable offerings for those who find themselves clad in human skin?

But there are still those who feel that if they whisper the name of God, bow their heads repeatedly and tiptoe through the sanctuary, the heavens will flash a big smile of approval.

Not for me.

I will continue to promote the idea that the Gospel was meant to be shared by humans, for humans. Therefore, any idea that angelic or pious approaches will reach the human family is ludicrous.

The good news is that abundant life, joyousness and peace of mind are still appealing to people.

The better news is, it just happens to be what Jesus wants us to share.

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Catchy (Sitting 18) Where in the Hell Is Exactly Where … October 22nd, 2017

Jonathots Daily Blog

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After an exhausting three-day search through the streets of Las Vegas, Prophet Morgan finally ran across Jimmy the Runt (that’s what folks called him), who tried to explain in an animated and often-squeaky voice what had happened to Jubal Carlos.

Matthew had contacted Prophet and asked him to go to Vegas, locate Jubal and keep him in a safe place until Matthew could join them and make the proposal to Mr. Carlos about what certainly might be the bravest and most bizarre promotion in the history of mankind.

It was not an elaborate ruse, but rather, a performance art piece, presenting Jubal Carlos as Jesus–in character, personality, mannerisms and speech. That was the idea.

So Prophet Morgan was sent to locate Jubal, only to discover that he was nowhere to be found. After Jimmy the Runt nervously offered his rendition of the events that had brought about the disappearance, which only left Prophet Morgan with more questions than answers, the Prophet decided to go a little deeper into the honeycomb of the homeless community.

There he met an old Indian chief named Plato. The street folks called him Plato because they thought he possessed great wisdom (and because he insisted that was his name). Plato was just the opposite of Jimmy the Runt. He was slow of speech, overly thoughtful, and unwilling to change his pace for anyone, especially Prophet Morgan, who apparently resembled some of the early settlers who had stolen his people’s land. After three-and-a-half hours of interrogation, Chief Plato finally came out with it.

“They have arrested young Jubal and taken him to jail.”

Prophet Morgan squinted. It seemed completely unlikely. Jubal was well known up and down the Strip, and unless he had gunned down a showgirl outside the Golden Nugget, he probably was not going to find himself in trouble with the law.

But just to make sure, Prophet Morgan headed down to the Clark County Jail, and was able to confirm that there was a Jubal Carlos being held prisoner. He not only was in jail, but had already been tried, convicted and sentenced to spend thirty days there, courtesy of the county.

It was all too odd–and when Prophet Morgan demanded to see Jubal, he was told that unless he was an attorney or had clearance from the federal government, there would be no possibility of making contact.

“What was he convicted of?” demanded Prophet.

A policeman in his late forties, who had obviously forgotten how to smile two decades ago, looked down at the arrest orders and said, “Not that it’s any of your business, but Mr. Carlos was arrested for second degree disturbing of the peace.”

Morgan frowned. “What is second degree disturbing of the peace?”

The cop, without missing a beat, replied, “It’s one degree more serious than first degree disturbing of the peace.”

Prophet Morgan smiled, hoping it was a joke, as the cop stared at him without moving a whisker on his 1973 mustache.

Prophet Morgan left the Clark County Jail and called Matthew, giving him the status. Matthew swore in four languages, three of which he did not know. He hung up the phone and he took the first plane to Las Vegas. Arriving in town, he immediately took a taxi to the Clark County Jail, where he, too, had the pleasure of meeting the Mustachioed Quiet Man, clad in Baker’s Brown.

As Matthew was trying to convince the constable of his need to meet with Jubal Carlos, he glanced down at the file on the desk and noticed that written across it in large letters was the word, “PRIORITY.”

Pointing at the file, he asked, “Is that Jubal Carlos’s file?”

The cop fired back, “It’s none of your damn business, but yes.”

Matthew giggled because even though it wasn’t his business, he still got a reply. He continued, “Why is ‘priority’ written on the file? And while you’re at it, answer another question. What is second degree disturbing of the peace?”

The policeman opened a book, thumbed a few pages and came to Statute 469-374-8. He read from Paragraph Three: “Any individual who engages in any activity which causes the disruption of the common good shall be arrested and pay a fine of $264 and spend thirty days in jail.”

Matthew shook his head. “That’s the weirdest damn thing I’ve ever heard in my life.”

The cop half whispered, “It’s from 1954. Vegas was weird back then. There were a lot of gangsters running around town, carousing and shootin’ their guns off at night. The good folks of the community wanted to make sure they had some law to protect them from the hooligans.”

“Hooligans,” repeated Matthew. “Have you met Jubal Carlos?”

“I have not had the pleasure.” At this point, the cop turned on his heel and walked away. Matthew thought he was going to retrieve another document, so he waited for a few minutes, but the stoic law enforcement officer never returned.

Matthew wasn’t sure what to do. He didn’t have enough legal training to know whether a writ of Habeas Corpus could be rendered, since Jubal was already convicted.

So figuring that Mr. Carlos could be no more than three or four rooms away, he ran through the police station screaming at the top of his lungs, “Jubal! Jubal!”

Actually he was fairly astounded at how long he was able to continue the rampage before he was tackled and thrown to the ground by two burly cops.

Still, they would not throw him into the common clink, where he could be united with Jubal. Desperate and not willing to wait, he shoved one of the policemen, who fell over a trash can, landed against a computer, which knocked over a desk and spilled over to a nearby secretary, who was innocently watching but suddenly found herself tipped over in her chair, unceremoniously landing on the floor. She squealed like a family of mice.

The original cop, who had been watching the strange scene from a distance, ambled over to Matthew and said, “You are under arrest.”

Matthew took a deep breath and replied, “It’s about goddamn time.”

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Jesonian … October 21st, 2017

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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jesonian-cover-amazon

Even though I am an admirer, believer and follower of Jesus, there are things that bother me.

Yes, some attributes of Jesus give me the creeps.

Let’s start with the fact that he claimed to be “one with God.” Normally when folks make such an assertion, we give them a free trip to a mental hospital instead of building churches in their name. “I am God”–the classic statement made by megalomaniacs throughout history.

Secondly, he seemed to have a strong death wish. About halfway through his work, he became obsessed with his own execution. Needless to say, this is repeated throughout history by leaders who ended up being nefarious.

Can I give you a third one? How about this–he invited his disciples to drink his blood. That’s creepy. Although you can point out that it was a symbolic act, I don’t like to think about even symbolically taking in hemoglobin.

And there is the fact that he is traditionally reported to have stayed away from sex. Although surrounded by women and a plethora of men, it is alleged that he was as pure as the driven snow. We can certainly attest to the fact that those who pursue that lifestyle often end up being perverted, using their abstinence to injure the lives of others.

I’m sorry, these are some creepy things.

If I walked into your house and said, “Hey, did you hear about that guy down in Texas who thinks he’s God, hangs around with a bunch of women but says he abstains from sex, prophesies that the government is going to come and kill him, and it is reported that he makes his followers drink his blood…”

Come on. This is going to freak you out.

So why, since I know all these creepy things, do I still follow Jesus? It’s because of what he taught and how he followed up with it in his own life.

His teachings were non-violent. Most people who claim to be God want to kill you to prove the point.

Jesus didn’t care if you didn’t believe. He just went to another village.

His teachings were forgiving. Even though his disciples were a bunch of hotheads who wanted to kill their enemies, he rebuked them, told them to put their swords away and taught them that no one is better than anyone else.

His teachings were inclusive. Even though the average Jew of his day had a hit list of cultures which needed to be destroyed, Jesus walked freely with the Romans, the Greeks, the Samaritans, the Jews and the Afrikaans. He gave the same respect to everyone, whether a Pharisee or a man possessed with a thousand demons.

He also loved human beings. Even those who hated him.

He refused to take his claims of supremacy and force other people to submit to them. His philosophy was, “Whosoever will may come.”

So here’s an amazing fact: Jesus’ claims become viable because of his actions. It’s not that his actions are worth studying because of his claims.

I can accept some oddities in his choices, phrasing and mannerisms because his life was drenched in love.

Love is not creepy.

 

 

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G-Poppers … October 20th, 2017

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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He was tall, lean, with tight jeans, leather skin, cowboy hat and a big cigarette puffing out of his head.

He was The Marlboro Man.

G-Pop grew up believing that this cowboy was the symbol of masculinity.

Unfortunately, G-Pop was so-so tall, portly, marshmallow skin, baseball hat, with no “Puff the Magic Dragon.” Needless to say, his appearance was not deemed macho.

The vision persisted until other images of emaciated victims of cigarette smoking splashed on the scene–the consequence of years of tobacco, tar and nicotine.

So nowadays we don’t really know what makes up a man or what constitutes a woman, though we are certain that the two sexes are better when they intertwine instead of interact.

What makes a man?

What constitutes a woman?

It does sound like the beginning of a very long essay, or a series done by a writer attempting to generate readership through a dribble of controversy. G-Pop shall save you the time.

  • A man is a person who tells the truth, beginning with himself.
  • Likewise a woman tells the truth, beginning with herself.

The absence of truth places every human being right back in the center of the animal kingdom, willing to do anything to survive.

And as Pontius Pilate sardonically phrased, “What is truth?”

Truth is what we understand to be factual, while waiting for more information to enlighten us.

There’s nothing sexier than telling the truth.

Nothing more romantic than making it clear that you can be trusted.

There’s nothing more valuable to another soul than being able to relax with the account that’s been stated, and have some measure of confidence that it’s true.

Matter of fact, the truth sounds terribly alluring until you realize that occasionally it demands confession, apologies and repentance.

There is a contingency of our society that has begun to believe that the best way to avoid difficulty is to always deny any responsibility. It is pukey, sickening and devoid of any of the clarity which makes it simpler to live life.

Somebody lied to The Marlboro Man about cigarettes, so he ended up lying to us. Somebody’s lying today, and we are being tempted to buy into the lies and offer them up as explanations.

God help us all.

G-Pop would love to encourage his children to tell the truth, beginning with themselves.

It’s not always pretty, but it is always beautiful.

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3 Things… October 19th, 2017

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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On How to Make a Good Lasagna

1. Use ricotta instead of cottage cheese

2. Not too soupy, salty or sweet

3. Instead of ground beef, put sweet Italian sausage to use

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PoHymn: A Rustling in the Stagnant … October 18th, 2017

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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Only Once

The doctor wants my skin

The devil craves my soul

The gossips find my sin

The tension takes its toll

The town needs a son

The school gives a grade

I want some fun

Willing to make a trade

Touching girly flesh

Blessed are the meek

Need to have it fresh

Sick of being weak

Pieces of the Word

Spoken piously

Often seem absurd

Meaningless to me

I’m pissed hearing bells

Like a rat in a maze

Please let me tell

It’s not just a phase

I’m stuck in a place

Where they won’t preach

Haunted by a space

A lesson you can’t teach

A whisper in the dark

I flee from the light

It’s time to make my mark

Pleasure is in sight

Searing raw

Lost obscene

Only once

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Cracked 5 … October 17th, 2017


Jonathots Daily Blog

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cracked 5 logo keeper with border

In January 1961, during his Inaugural Address, President Kennedy stated, “Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.” What few people know is that there were five previous drafts to that statement before arriving at the sixth one which was shared with the public. Today, as a benefit to our readers, we present to you those previous incarnations:

A. Ask for yourself. Your country will do it.

 

B. Ask for a country, just for yourself.

 

C. What your country can do for you–ask me about it.

 

D. What you can do for your country is asking yourself, what has your country done for you?

 

E. Stop asking so much.

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