PoHymn: A Rustling in the Stagnant … November 30th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(3141)

pohymn-in-charge-of-fate

In Charge of Fate

Here I sit and fitfully wait

He always seems to be so late

So left to my own thinking

Sleepy, my eyes are blinking

What is taking so long?

It’s painful to remain strong

Does it care that I am weary?

Fearful, angry, sad and dreary

As each second dribbles away

Impertinent, wasting a precious day

Why am I being rejected?

The only soul seemingly affected

Do they possess some care for me?

Are you too busy to look and see

That I have lost my childlike dream

Abandoned my hope of a heavenly scheme

My soul may need the patience I know

But I require some harvest to grow

Here I sit, nowhere to be

There it is, ignoring me

Is there a purpose, perhaps a plan?

Or just a random mistreatment of man

I should be kinder to their name

But right now I need someone to blame

For the place I’ve landed, ordained by me

Only my willingness can make me free

Yet truth is such an abstract thought

Can’t be cajoled, stolen or bought

Am I the one in charge of fate?

If not, why is she so goddamn late?

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Cracked 5 … November 29th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(3140)

cracked 5 logo keeper with border

Reasons the Ohio State Buckeyes Beat the Michigan Wolverines

A.  Michigan was chased by badgers, gophers, Hoosiers and Spartans

 

B.  One school is Urban; the other needs to hit the “Jim”

 

C.  Real name of team: “Miss-Again”

 

D.  Ohio State scored more points

 

E.  God loves Buckeyes

  cracked-5-no-wolverine

 

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Good News and Better News… November 28th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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good-news-man-thanksgiving

Yesterday–for the first time all year–I did not go to a church and share my heart for a Sunday morning worship service.

I am officially on hiatus for the Christmas season. I think the obvious questions would be, how do I feel about not ministering and performing. Did I miss it?

Actually what I felt was nothing.

Although some people would consider that to be a negative statement, “nothing” is the most positive position in which we can find ourselves.

Several years ago I was prompted in my spirit to close letters I wrote to a friend with the phrase, “without nothing.” I think she was a bit confused by this departing phrase, but it’s quite simple. Without nothing, something has no chance of happening.

The best way to ensure that you will not pursue anything of new value or creativity is to constantly claim, “I’m busy.”

Busy smothers the better parts of our soul

Busy convinces us that we have no time.

And busy shuts out others in preference to a pre-arranged party-goers.

When we finally stop being busy, we can arrive at nothing, which then offers the possibility of something.

If we don’t have enough time on our hands to be nearly frustrated by the time on our hands, then we’ll never use the time on our hands to take our hands to create.

  • Without nothing, there is no something.
  • Without a void, there is no filling.
  • Without loneliness, no new relationships.
  • Without grumbling over the absence of a feeling, there is no seeking innovation.

So as I sat in my chair Sunday morning, thinking for a moment what song I might be singing or story I might be telling under normal conditions, I was suddenly flooded with the assurance that God uses nothing to get my attention to do something.

That’s the good news.

The better news is: I found something.

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Jesonian: Reverend Meningsbee (Part 31) Seek and Ye Go Blind … November 27th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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Reverend Meningsbee

Reverend Richard Meningsbee searched for an hour for a computer he knew was gone.

It was impossible it could be any other place than where it had been left, but to fulfill righteousness and drain off some angst, he scoured the house.

It was nowhere to be found.

He spent the rest of the day, when he should have been preparing his Sunday morning sermon, conjuring images of what might have happened to his P.C.

Was Katrina involved?

Was it stolen by an agent of the USBN?

And more frightening was considering what they wanted.

Ninety-nine percent of what he had on that magical box was common drivel or ecclesiastical notes. It was that one percent that terrified him–and each new flashback was more injurious to his mind than the previous.

Surviving a restless night, he made his way to church, and decided that the only way to cleanse his soul of the pain and anxiety was to share–not in detail, but in principle.

So he stepped in front of the congregation and began.

“I feel attacked. Do you ever feel attacked? In my case, I feel attacked by circumstances–just the everyday happenings that seem to have suddenly decided to target me and take me down. This attack is causing me to worry. Like most human beings, I worry about the future. What will this attack mean going forward? Can I overcome my circumstances and achieve some form of victory–or at least draw a stalemate with the evil that taunts me? And most certainly, I feel betrayed. Not so much by others, but betrayed by my own weakness–a hounding dog barking at my heels, reminding me that I am insufficient. So I come before you this morning attacked, worried and betrayed.

Yet in the midst of all this is an abiding faith which says ‘nothing can separate me from the love of God’ and that ‘all things will work together for my good.’

I must be honest with you. Those voices are softer and gentler than the screaming attack of the worried betrayal. But if I get quiet and still, I can hear the whisper of faith. So that is what I am going to do right now. I’m going to stop speaking and just allow myself to listen as I kneel.”

Meningsbee walked to the altar rail, which had basically become a decoration in the modern-day church–a reminder of past revivals, when people allowed themselves to be overtaken by the goodness of God.

He knelt and prayed.

He prayed about his computer.

He prayed about the hidden iniquity displayed on the browser.

He prayed to be forgiven for his weakness.

So intently did he pray that he failed to recognize that he was suddenly surrounded by nearly all the congregation, as they, too, gathered to admit the attack had brought worry and betrayal to their lives.

God had taken the evil that had befallen the community and was now using it to make good.

It was a warm, kind, tear-filled morning that culminated with everyone embracing and encouraging one another.

Reverend Meningsbee was heartened by the experience, but still in the throes of a deep depression as he made his way home.

Stepping inside, he opened the door and gazed into his little office–and there it was.

The computer was back.

“Where have you been, my friend?”

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Dear Man/Dear Woman: A Noteworthy Conversation … November 26th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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Dear Man Dear Woman

Woman: I’m pregnant.

 

Man: What do you mean?

 

Woman: You don’t know what pregnant is?

 

Man: Yes, I know what pregnant is, I just don’t know why you would think you’re pregnant.

 

Woman: I was told I was.

 

Man: It’s not possible.

 

Woman: What do you mean, it’s not possible?

 

Man: I mean, I’m engaged to you and I know that I haven’t had sex with you, so the possibility of you being pregnant is zilch.

 

Woman: Listen, and listen carefully. I would like you to listen even if you don’t believe what I’m saying. And listen with the mind that the last thing in the world I would want to do is lie to you.

 

Man: You’re creeping me out. What are you trying to say?

 

Woman: I’m trying to say that I have been visited.

 

Man: You’ve had another man?

 

Woman: No, of course not. We’re going to be married. I… Well, I don’t know. Do you believe in angels?

 

Man: Are you asking me if I believe in angels or if I think there really are angels? Because it’s a different answer.

 

Woman: Are you saying you believe in things you don’t think are real?

 

Man: Hell, yes. There are two kinds of belief. There’s the belief that if I put seed in the ground, it will grow and I’ve got a good chance of a harvest. Then there’s belief in angels, which I’ve never seen, have no evidence of and just decide to go along with because the God who makes the seed grow insists they are real.

 

Woman: That’s interesting. Because the God who makes that seed grow has placed a seed in me that’s growing.

 

Man: Woman, you’ve lost me.

 

Woman: I hope not. I hope you can just listen a little bit more and understand. Because even if I’m crazy and this is all in my brain and I am stark raving nuts, I’m going to need you to hang around and take care of me. But if what I’m telling you turns out to be real, I’m going to need you to hang around to be part of it.

 

Man: Cut to the chase. What are we talking about?

 

Woman: An angel has told me that God is placing a baby inside me who is going to be the Messiah.

 

Man: What? Why you?

 

Woman: Thank you very much for that vote of confidence. I don’t know why me. Maybe it’s because everybody else turned Him down. Or maybe He knew that I was willing to at least consider it was possible.

 

Man: Let me go over what I’m hearing. You’re telling me that an actual angel spoke to you, telling you that God was going to give you a baby even though you haven’t been with a man…

 

Woman: Apparently that’s important–the fact that it isn’t coming from one fellow. The baby isn’t coming from one nation, or this baby isn’t the actual “seed of David,” but instead is a child of all the Earth…

 

Man: But you see, that’s where you’re wrong. The prophecies say that the baby will come through the loins of the seed of David, birthed from a Jew. Why would God have all these men in the Old Testament and then suddenly turn to a woman to deliver His messenger?

 

Woman: Actually, he’s supposed to be called Jesus.

 

Man: I am so freaking disappointed in you. If you made a mistake and slept with someone…I don’t know. Maybe I could forgive you. But at least I would not feel insulted that you thought you could deceive me with this tale of angels.

 

Woman: I completely understand your point. I knew when I came to tell you the story, I had to be prepared for the fact that it’s so unbelievable that you would not be able to comprehend it. I don’t know why the angel didn’t tell us together… but I think God just got tired of men dominating women, and He decided to do something with a woman, minus the man.

 

Man: There’s no history of it.

 

Woman: There’s never been a Messiah before.

 

Man: So what am I supposed to do?

 

Woman: You’re supposed to listen to me–which you’ve done–and decide for yourself if I’m a cheater, a deceiver, crazy, or blessed.

 

Man: No man could do that. No man could sort through this mess.

 

Woman: Maybe you’ll need an angel, too…

 

Man: Well, until my angel shows up, let me tell you that loving someone is not something that comes quickly and goes away just as quickly. Standing here, I feel bruised, upset, cheated… but in love. I need my thoughts to myself. I don’t want to say something stupid and hurt you, but I also don’t want to say something silly and find out you’re laughing at me.

 

Woman: I understand all of that. Parts of it hurt. Parts of it are reassuring. But I know this–even if I’m crazy, it’s my crazy. And I can’t turn my back on it. I promised I would be willing to see it through.

 

Man: Maybe we should sleep on it.

 

Woman: Maybe we should.

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“Quite literally the best Christmas stories I have ever read.” — Arthur Holland, Shelby, North Carolina

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G-Poppers … November 25th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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Jon close up

G-Pop would like to take this morning just to establish that human beings are human.

Although the concept may seem to be a given, religion turns us into sinners who are transformed to saints; politics insist we are a “movement,” and entertainment proclaims that we are of value simply because we are born.

Life on Earth is much easier when you realize how to deal with its major inhabitants–at least those who have brain power beyond raiding a picnic or grazing in a pasture.

There are two things to learn about people, and if you choose to educate yourself, you become much better at loving others and happier on your path:

1. Human beings are always spontaneously selfish.

If the moment’s whim intrigues them, they will chase it like a puppy dog trailing a sausage. Even if they’re working on something else or committed to achieving a goal, an immediate opportunity will rob their attention span and take them off on a chicken track of “clucking things up.”

Don’t be critical.

Just realize the same attitude dwells in you. Then you can assist others by limiting distractions and understanding that they will be slowed down by the ones you were unable to prohibit.

2. Human beings are only obliquely aware.

When we report a tragedy in a foreign land, the tendency is to only tally the deaths of the Americans. We want to be better than this; we want to pretend we give a damn, but the more the degrees of separation diverge from our own household of concern, the less chance we have of focusing compassion.

Therefore it is important to make it clear to everyone you wish to motivate that the available situation does improve their personal space.

Now, before pouncing on G-Pop and saying that he is overly simplistic or cynical, realize that God, Himself, feels the need to offer eternal life to keep us interested in our present one.

God also teases us with the possibility of being “given to” as a by-product of giving.

And God certainly offers rewards for good behavior.

We are human.

We are spontaneously selfish and obliquely aware.

So even when we’re altruistic, we still need a payoff. Stop asking humans to be either devils or angels. Those jobs are filled.

G-Pop wants you to know that God is madly in love with the unpredictable nature of the human heart, because He is fully cognizant that when we actually create, generate and innovate, it is definitely an action of masterful purpose.

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“Quite literally the best Christmas stories I have ever read.” — Arthur Holland, Shelby, North Carolina

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Ask Jonathots … November 24th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(3135)

ask jonathots bigger

How do you keep politics and religion from ruining a family gathering?

Life is truly about giving–but not merely in the sense of being generous. Rather, it’s about learning early and permanently when to give effort and when to give up.

Giving up can actually be one of the more noble steps of submission to overwhelming evidence. And giving effort is essential to achieve progress.

I bring this up in relationship to your question, because in order to have a good family gathering, you must know when to give effort and when to give up.

First of all, give up on changing people. You can’t, you won’t and you shouldn’t.

If Uncle Fred is a Republican, he will probably leave Thanksgiving evening equally as convinced. If Aunt Margaret is a Democrat, she will likewise ride her donkey out the door. And if any of your relatives claim to be atheists or insist that “all baptism must be by immersion or you’re not saved,” it is always a Godless pursuit to change those who are “all wet.”

So what can you do during a family gathering to be productive, but faithful to your own ideals? There is one simple, easy step:

Never speak in the abstract.

  • Don’t talk about doctrine.
  • Don’t talk about beliefs.
  • Don’t talk about Vladimir Putin.

Talk about your own life–your own goals, your own anecdotes–and in so doing, you gently confirm your beliefs.

In other words, if someone says “the homeless are a blight on the conscience of America,” wait until the conversation changes, and then double back and say, “I was waiting at a light at Wal-Mart, and a fellow was there with a sign, looking for money, so I rolled down my window with two dollars and I gave it to him, and he was so appreciative that it nearly made me cry.”

Then leave it alone.

When it comes to religion, humor is always your best vehicle:

“Well, I was driving down the road and I was nearly out of gas in a country setting and I wasn’t sure I would find a station. So I kept my eyes open, checked my GPS, but also–call me crazy–I said a little prayer. I’m not sure which one worked, or whether they worked together, but three minutes later I was at a gas station getting fueled up.”

Since you can’t change people, give up on that and instead, give effort into what you can change: your attitude toward people.

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Mr. Kringle’s Tales …26 Stories ‘Til Christmas

Only $5.99 plus $1.25 shipping and handling!

An advent calendar of stories, designed to enchant readers of all ages

“Quite literally the best Christmas stories I have ever read.” — Arthur Holland, Shelby, North Carolina

Only $5.99 plus $1.25 shipping and handling.

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