Scared Cropless… January 3, 2012

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Jonathan in Miami

I just found out that she’s very sick.

I met her thirty years ago when she was just a kid and I really was, too, although I had a few years on her. She wanted to be a singer but had settled for a husband. He was a religious fellow who ended up procuring some violence and repression along with his favorite Bible verses. He didn’t want her to sing–so she didn’t do much.

She was an idealist. An idealist is a person who cleans up the messes in life, convinced that it’s just preparations for a great big party. More often than not, the party doesn’t arrive. Her life became a journey of disappointment, masked by moments of religious euphoria. In a juncture of weakness, she obtained a lover who fathered three children with her but never quite got the idea of being a husband. She was a damaged soul with a pasted-on smile, singing hymns with tears in her eyes.

She was always in financial need, always praying for God’s grace and always talking to me about how “next week” she planned on doing “something” with her abilities. She never did.

She did the three things that we humans perform when we are silently frightened of trying to compete and still want to appear self-righteous. She settled in, she hid away and she checked out. She settled in to a life of domestication, making her children her life. She hid away in the choir at a large church, pretending she was using her gift to full capacity, and she checked out of any responsibility to sow her seed and reap. And the Bible she honored so dearly made it quite clear that God is not mocked–that “whatsoever a man sows, that shall he also reap.”

The problem with that concept is that most people are scared cropless. Out of fear of reaping the wrong conclusions, they just refuse to sow anything into the earth and they sit back and do their best impersonation of patience.

She was a princess, expecting a prince. She was a believer, demanding a miracle. And she was a talent, waiting for opportunity. She failed to realize that the Prince has already arrived and is offering us peace; that miracles are what God provides when He encounters an exhausted believer who is still moving forward faithfully, and that opportunity only comes to those who refuse to bury their talents, but place them out visibly for others to see and enjoy.

Tears came to my eyes when I heard about her illness, mainly because I love her and I’m very sad that she’s not well. But I’m also greatly angered by a religiosity that still permeates our society which keeps people crippled in their inadequacy instead of telling them to rise and walk in the newness of life. The fact of the matter is, most people don’t reap bad things in their lives because they sowed poorly–the majority of the populace reaps nothing because they planted nothing. They played it safe, they waited for the next train, and they passed on the possibility. So the time of harvest comes around and they have very little to celebrate. They falsely believe that it is the lot of those who follow Jesus to be the underdogs.

How sad.

Please pray for her. I hope she recovers and gets another chance to stop expecting, demanding and waiting. I hope she gets a door to escape settling in, hiding away and checking out.

Don’t be scared cropless. Take what you have, plant it, water it and see what happens. You never know. It just might grow.

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Jonathan wrote the gospel/blues anthem, Spent This Time, in 1985, in Guaymas, Mexico. Take a listen:

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To see books written by Jonathan, click the link below! You can peruse and order if you like!

http://www.janethan.com/tour_store.htm

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