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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Jesonian: Reverend Meningsbee (Part 8) Fruity Labors … June 19th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(2977)

Reverend Meningsbee

Meningsbee sat in his car panting, with sweat dribbling down his face.

What just happened?

His mind raced to retrieve some sanity.

He had gone to the grocery store to pick up some fruit, and was standing in the produce section, trying to decide between blueberries or blackberries, when he was tapped on the shoulder. He turned around to discover that he was surrounded by three irate women in their seventies.

There was no escape.

Woman One piped up. “What gives you the right to come to our town, break apart families and remove our sense of community?”

Without affording Meningsbee a chance to respond, Woman Two inserted her piece. “What was so wrong with our little Garsonville church? I think we were a loving sort until you showed up.”

Likewise, Woman Three intoned her complaint. “We dedicated that organ in the church to my grandmother, and now I’m not even able to go.”

Meningsbee tried to figure out a way to respond without becoming defensive, but the women continued to bombard him with their frustrations, refusing to allow him to leave. It caused such a commotion that the store manager called the local police, who uncharacteristically arrived within three minutes.

The constable felt it was his job to get to the bottom of the story, so he listened patiently as the women outlined their grievances.

When Meningsbee was asked to describe his take on the situation, he chose to remain silent, realizing that he was not only outnumbered, but also that his rendition might seem anemic compared to their enraged profile.

Unfortunately, a local reporter for the newspaper was in the store at the time, and she felt it was her responsibility to interview the participants, with Meningsbee politely declining.

He just quickly grabbed some fruit, went through the checkout and exited the store. Now he sat alone, bruised and a bit infuriated at being ambushed.

Yet the situation did not go away.

Two days later when the newspaper came out, there was an article about the incident and a background about the ongoing struggle between the Garsonville Church and the new Garsonville Christian Church, meeting at the Holiday Inn Express.

The closing line of the piece was provided by one of the women, who shared, “If the people who are still at the Garsonville Church really love us and respect us as neighbors, they will at least come out to our new gathering and give it a chance.”

Even as Reverend Meningsbee was in the midst of reading the article, the phone rang. It was the first of thirty-five or forty calls he received from parishioners, saying that they were torn and conflicted, and felt it would maybe be good for them to show their respect by going to the Garsonville Christian Church this week.

Meningsbee didn’t know what to say. Honestly, he wanted to cry. He never intended to split up families nor bring conflict–just share Jesus.

Upon arriving at the church on Sunday morning, Meningsbee discovered there were only twelve in attendance–and eight of them were the visitors who had come over the past several weeks.

Because he didn’t want to deal with unresolved hurt, he shared his heart with those who were present, and explained what he believed to be his mission and desire.

He dismissed the service and headed for his car. All the other attendees left the parking lot and he sat alone. He couldn’t help but feel cheated–and maybe even, in a strange sense, jealous.

After all, his congregation was somewhere else, listening to someone else–being torn between their new discovery of faith and their loyalty to tradition.

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G-25: Insulate or Isolate? … May 23, 2014

Jonathots Daily Blog

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handsSo you found yourself in the middle of a raging feud with your brother and a festering jealousy exploded into a violent rage, ending up with you murdering your sibling.

When confronted with the facts, you lied and then got caught–and instead of being executed for your crime, you’ve been exiled to the Land of Nod, East of Eden.

Now what?

The truth of the matter is, life doesn’t stop with the latest happy event, nor does it cease at the conclusion of a tragedy, but goes on.

How? The immediate temptation is to insulate yourself:

  • Why did this happen and how can I avoid it ever happening again?
  • How can I improve my image as quickly as possible?
  • Going forward, how can I play it safe?

This is what happens when people are bruised, offended, battered or just intimidated by the sheer, brute force of responsibility.

They begin to seek protection instead of opportunity. They request a reprieve from interaction instead of gaining strength through fellowship.They lessen their workload, insisting that being overwhelmed was what caused the problem–only to discover that being underwhelmed leaves them bored.

It’s a tough decision, but the most crucial moment in our lives–when we realize that the next thing we do needs to be important –and also better.

There is another path.

Isolate.

1. What did I do?

Sometimes we don’t totally realize the magnitude or the insignificance of our deeds and either overblow them or downplay them, never having an actual assessment of the event. Without this, it’s difficult to repent.

Yes, repent–the magnificent blending of “I’m sorry” and “this is how I’m going to change.”

2. What can I do?

Even though a certain desperation and futility can follow a defeat, the sooner we start convincing ourselves that we can be fruitful and contribute to our own efforts and the common good, the better off we will be.

Yes, as we’ve isolated off our deed, now we need to isolate off the abilities that remain.

3. Where do I start?

I hope it’s not an overstatement to say that the greatest danger in life is to either try to do too much or too little. Too much puts us right back at being overwhelmed–which may be the cause of our deviation in the first place. Taking on too little causes us to feel inadequate and weakened.

Where do I start? Isolate off a beginning point–and get busy.

It is a true statement that there is no sin or action that cannot be forgiven, but even little mistakes can stall us forever if we insulate ourselves from the truth instead of isolate the mishap…and discover a reason to commence.

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Arizona morning

After an appearance earlier this year in Surprise, Arizona, Janet and I were blessed to receive a “surprise” ourselves. Click on the beautiful Arizona picture above to share it with us!

Click here to get info on the "Gospel According to Common Sense" Tour

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