All I Know… August 19, 2013

Jonathots Daily Blog

(1980)

blind with dogAggravated–even though he felt foolish to manifest such a nagging emotion. After all, the improvement in his circumstances certainly had eliminated any need for additional vendettas or sprouting frustration.

He could see. The power of that simple phrase was that just short days before, he couldn’t.

See, that is.

Call it a miracle, a transition, an intervention or just the “course of human events”–no matter what position you took on the issue, he had gained a great gift, which to his delight, was not dimming with the passing of time.

It wasn’t so much that he was angered by those who had passed by him as strangers during his dark time, musing over the question of whether his excesses or some genetic flaw passed on my his parents had caused his condition. That’s just what people do. When they peer at something unpleasant they start looking for dark reasons which caused the affliction, so as to distance themselves from both danger and responsibility.

He was shocked, however, when his friends, who had known him since his birth in blindness, pretended they didn’t know who he was, or weren’t sure he was the same person they had been acquainted with. Or they offered that dastardly opinion: “Since his healing, he’s just not been the same.”

It was terrifying–and enraging–to go through the questioning from the investigating elite, who kept probing with repetitive inquiries about the source of his new-found sight, only to reject his story and rebuke him for believing in some sort of “Godly gift.”

At times, he was tempted to deny the measure of grace that now permitted him to eyeball the world instead of merely considering what the images might be, since those around him felt he was a sinner or a friend they used to know or some riff-raff who was confused by the unfolding of events.

Yes, doubt began to creep into his own soul about his good fortune. But you see, he stopped himself short of turning into a denier of his own blessing … because he could see.

He had never done that before. It was impossible to reject the manifestation.

So after hours and hours of grilling by people with agendas to destroy his miracle, he finally simply stated, “All I know is this: once I was blind but now I see.”

Of course, this simple statement of trust did nothing to deter his critics. He was so grateful he was able to see–because if he had been surrounded by those who refute, rebuff, renounce and reject and was only able to hear their words, it could have turned into a living hell.

But his eyes gave him the ability to look past their short-sightedness into the face of a heavenly intervention.

Why couldn’t people just rejoice? He didn’t know.

But he did realize that faith is not what we believe–faith is when what we see and hear begins to jive … with what we hope

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Four births and born again … July 1st, 2012

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Perhaps inspired by the impending arrival of my grandson, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about being born. Honestly, each one of us needs a lot more than the earth to “make womb” for us. I think Jesus was right–we DO need to be born again. Otherwise, we have a nagging suspicion that plagues us throughout our lives–that we are merely pantomiming the wishes of our culture, passing through the Xerox machine of a genetic code. For a moment, forget about heaven. Earth-life has to be a lot more than just me trying to struggle, in quiet desperation, with some sort of destiny that has already been pre-determined.

After careful deliberation, I realized that each one of us needs four births to finally be born again. I saw it in my own life–or maybe better phrased, I see it in my own life.

I need an emotional birthing. I need to be able to say, “I am not alarmed by what I feel.” Otherwise, I will commit the first true sin of all human beings–I will learn to lie about my emotions. I will become comfortable masking my intentions in an attempt to make everything I do seem clean in the sight of others.

I have so many examples of this in my life, I barely know where to start. I once was alarmed that I got married too early. I was alarmed that I had no college education. I was a little alarmed that fame eluded me. I was alarmed that I didn’t seem to have the moxie and will-power to shed my excess pounds. I guess one day I got tired of being alarmed, and decided to instead be forthcoming and speak my heart aloud. Upon hearing my inadequacies floating in the air, they didn’t seem quite so alarming, and some of them seemed downright funny. I experienced an emotional birth.

Likewise, it took me a while to understand spirituality. I thought it was having a conviction about God or the Bible. Then one day I realized that the way to be born spiritually is to say to yourself, “I am not ashamed to believe.” It’s one thing to stand in a congregation of devotees and declare your faith and an entirely different matter to walk amongst the mockers and those who deem themselves to be logical and still continue to hold fast to a hope.

I have been around people who think I am stupid because I insist that I have a relationship with an unseen Father. One day I just stopped caring, and instead, reveled in the reassurance. It was the day I was birthed spiritually–and now I can say I am not ashamed to believe.

For many years I thought it was a sign of maturity to grab onto an idea and not relinquish it, even when new information began to contradict the original thought. When did stubbornness become a kissing cousin of intelligence?  Even in politics, they are so afraid of vacillation that they will follow policies which have historically proven to be erred, and in the present format are also weighed in the balances and found wanting.

One day I decided to rebirth my mind. I did so with a very simple phrase: “I am not afraid to change my thinking.” There are things that I now hold true that I did not agree with ten years ago. Matter of fact, you probably can go back into my jonathots and find contradictions. I don’t care. I refuse to have my brain encased in either dogma or concrete. I have received a mental birth because I am not afraid to change my thinking.

My most recent birth has occurred in the physical realm. Last summer I nearly gave up on the whole idea of being totally healthy, and even questioned any capability on my part to lose weight. It seemed that I had so many genetic markers against me, and a metabolism that hadn’t moved since the Kennedy administration. I felt justified to be discouraged. I felt as if I had lost out in the genetic lottery and it was only righteous for me to succumb to my circumstances. If I had continued that line of thinking, I not only would have failed to be birthed with a new body, but also would have been on the pathway to quietly terminating myself.

Something happened. Something previously immovable inside of me shifted slightly. All I know is that I have experienced a physical birth, and … “I am no longer aggravated to go through the physical steps to become more healthy.” Rather than a chore, it has become a game. Instead of being my curse, it has transformed into my cause. I am trying many things and experimenting with the vigor of Thomas Edison attempting to light up his bulb. I have been born physically.

  • I am not alarmed by what I feel–it is a birthing of heart.
  • I am not ashamed to believe–spirit born.
  • I am not afraid to change my thinking–mind renewed.And I am not aggravated to become more healthy–body rejuvenated.

The culmination of these four births is placing me in a status–or at least an emerging awareness–of being born again, which is the ultimate proclamation:

  • I am alive as me.

Sometimes it’s not enough to have a mother. You need a father, too. And sometimes a mother and father aren’t enough without sisters and brothers. And often, a mother, father, sisters and brothers can still leave you incomplete–until you allow yourself to be born again.

Four births–heart, spirit, mind and strength–lending themselves to the glorious proclamation:

I have been born again.

   

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