PoHymn: A Rustling in the Stagnant … July 13th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(3001)

Reformation Pohymn

Reformation

Much more than a confirmation

We are children of a reformation

Finding ways to embrace each other

Let me call you sister and brother

Escaping the screaming crowd

Who struggle with the proud

Let us take the Jesus path

Allow our hearts a childlike laugh

And weep for those bound by need

The sower going forth to scatter the seed

And determine that the way we pray

Comes from the heart, not mere words to say

And pepper the south, north, west and east

With the salt of the earth for those deemed least

We are the reformation

A royal priesthood, holy nation

I believe in you

Will you believe in me?

God will guide us through

The Son will make us free.

Donate Button

The producers of jonathots would humbly request a yearly subscription donation of $10 for this wonderful, inspirational opportunity


Jonathan’s Latest Book Release!

PoHymn: A Rustling in the Stagnant

Click here to get your copy now!

PoHymn cover jon

 

Jesonian: Reasonable (Part 14) Living … March 6th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(2865)

Jesonian hands

She had found her place.

She was satisfied.

She had substance and purpose.

Then, all at once, life, which had promised only good, interrupted with pain.

She was bleeding–not excessively. Just continually. Everything that was once pure became tainted by the introduction of this new evil.

Her sense of solvency was challenged. Now her money had only one purpose:

“Heal me. Stop the bleeding. Give me back my life as I knew it.”

A change was necessary. She went from having a life to needing to live.

For to live is finding a way to continue your life when it threatens to depart.

  • She sought cures.
  • She studied.
  • She examined.
  • She trolled for possibilities.

Expensive.

For twelve years, she struggled to find a treatment while simultaneously growing weaker as her affliction drained away the essence of her will and her finance.

Life had turned on her. Unfortunately, her passion and efforts to live also failed.

She remained sick as the doctors got rich.

She found herself languishing in poor health.

Her instinct to live left her bankrupt and teetering on death.

What now?

What do you do when life turns sour, and efforts to live are foiled?

There is one choice that remains: move towards living.

Go where there is still the energy of loving and pursuing. Escape away to any living possibility.

Because living is endurance. It is deciding to add joy to the process so as not to grow weary in such well-doing. She decides to leave nothing untried.

She hears about a “giver of life.” The rumors are mixed. Some deem this miracle man to be a savior, while others insist he is the son of hell.

But living is not a guarantee–rather, a desire to continue in hope.

So she makes a plan.

Planning makes her feel better–it helps her to realize that she still has some control.

She will touch the hem of this healer’s garment, with the anticipation that mere proximity to his virtue will grant her a cleansing from all sickness.

Her idea is childlike.

Her organization, tenuous.

But her faith, willingness and joy–persistent.

She pulls her plan off–and amazingly, it works.

She is whole.

She is free to go back to life, or to return to her city to live. But it seems ridiculous to merely pass time when living is available.

So she curls up in prayer, thanks God for His intervention, and allows herself … to be born again.

Donate Button

The producers of jonathots would humbly request a yearly subscription donation of $10 for this wonderful, inspirational opportunity

 

G-Poppers … November 27th, 2015

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(2765)

Jon close up

 

Though a little bizarre, G-Pop decided that Thanksgiving was fine because the grandchildren outnumbered the dogs by one.

Yes–five to four.

A little too close for the sake of sanity but still within the margin of error.

As all the family busied themselves preparing the delicacies they hoped would be the winner of the day, G-Pop just sat in his chair and thought for a moment about how absolutely amazing Thanksgiving and the season leading up to Christmas truly is.

In a way it’s about Santa Claus.

Very few personalities are as much maligned and revered as the Jolly Old Elf. But he does have a special formula for approaching humanity which is a workable format, and seems to gain traction every year.

It’s never out of style. It’s never rebuked so much by the religionists that it ends up being cast aside in favor of Biblical themes, and his presence is not so bound to the manger that those who have no reverence can still acknowledge the relevance.

It’s really a very simple plan of action:

1. Get prepared.

Think about the children and get the grownups to become more childlike.

2. Climb a little higher up on the roof.

You can see better. Ground level often leaves us grim.

3. Once you see better, slide down into people’s living rooms.

For after all, there’s no way to get folks to come to the North Pole–it’s too cold. At least, that’s the rumor. Also, human beings are not interested in becoming elves. So instead, you go to them, you go into their living rooms where they fellowship and nurture one another.

4. Next, bring gifts.

We’re all suckers for a gift. As long as we don’t have to sign on a dotted line, ending up with hidden payments, a free gift opens up the human heart.

We will never be able to intimidate the world into a submission of peace.

We will never evangelize the world into accepting a common Christ.

But we can come into their homes with a great package:

A. God loves.

B. God listens.

C. God learns.

Donate Button

The producers of jonathots would humbly request a yearly subscription donation of $10 for this wonderful, inspirational opportunity

***************************

Don’t let another Christmas go by without purchasing Jonathan’s bestselling Christmas book!

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

Click here to read all about Mr. Kringle's Tales...26 Stories Til Christmas! Only $5.99 plus $1.25 shipping and handling.

Click here to read all about Mr. Kringle’s Tales…26 Stories Til Christmas! Only $5.99 plus $1.25 shipping and handling.

 

“The best Christmas stories I’ve ever read!”

From the toy shop to the manger, an advent calendar of Christmas stories, beginning on November 30th and ending on Christmas morning.

We need a good Christmas this year.

Mr. Kringle’s Tales will help you make it so.

Buy today.

"Buy

 

 

Jesonian: The Haves for the Have Nots… August 17, 2014

Jonathots Daily Blog

(2325)

bottleI have come to give you abundant life.

I have come so your joy can be full.

I have come to fulfill, not destroy.

I have come to give you rest.

I have come to serve, not to be served.

I have come to give you the power to become the sons and daughters of God.

I have come to bring a sword of dissension, which leads to true discovery.

I have prepared a place for you.

I have come to lay down my life.

I have come to be the light of the world.

I have come as the way, the truth and the life.

I have come to show you the Father.

I have come to proudly be the son of man.

I have come with a child-like heart.

I have come to separate the wheat from the chaff.

I have come to be the first fruits of many creatures.

I have come to preach the gospel to the poor.

I have been tempted in every way.

And most importantly, I have come to save … not condemn.

Donate Button

The producers of jonathots would humbly request a yearly subscription donation of $10 for this wonderful, inspirational opportunity

 

The Sermon on the Mount in music and story. Click the mountain!

The Sermon on the Mount in music and story. Click the mountain!

 

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

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

Please contact Jonathan’s agent, Jackie Barnett, at (615) 481-1474, for information about scheduling SpiriTed in 2014.

Click here to listen to Spirited music

Click here to listen to Spirited music

god-awful … January 4, 2013

(1,750)

jon holding up Bible

Sticking ones head into a book brings a very limited scope of possibility, even if it happens to be the Good Book.

I need to realize this on my 2013 quest to become more childlike in my faith. One of the worst ways to believe is to have a screwed-up concept of God. You would actually be better off having no God at all than having a god-awful one.

A childlike faith tells me that above all else, if I’m going to continue to believe in God, I need to understand the importance of disregarding anybody who wants to make Him awful–and that’s by either definition–awful in the sense of “filled with mystery and wonder,” and also awful in the aspect of having a really bad attitude and not liking anyone.

Here are the three things I know about children in relation to belief. Children require comprehension. You can tell them stories, but you’d better be prepared to answer questions about your little tales. The minute you tell a child that there’s a God, he or she will ask you three quick questions. (1) Where is God? (2) Who made God? and (3) Why doesn’t God do more to make things better?

Even a six-year-old knows that you are confused and avoiding the issue if you answer each of those questions with, “We don’t exactly understand–and that’s why they call it faith.”

So in my childlike mind for 2013, I answered those questions–really simply.

1. Where is God? Everywhere, especially in and around those who are ready to meet needs and have needs.

2. Who made God? God is a Spirit, and therefore, He blows toward the next point of need, so probably somewhere along the line, God made God because there was a need to do so.

3. Why doesn’t God do more? We return to our premise–God is a Spirit. He has a heart and a soul, seeking out people with minds and bodies who are willing to become God to the people around them.

The second thing I need as a childlike believer is to know the difference between Jack and Jonah. Jack and the Beanstalk and Jonah in the whale sound very similar to an eight-year-old mind. I do not try to explain to myself why Jack climbed the beanstalk and destroyed the giant. I also do not try to explain to anyone whether Jonah actually spent three days in the belly of a whale. The message I got from Jack and the beanstalk is that magic beans just bring more trouble. And the message I get from Jonah and the whale is that running away from the needs of your fellow-human beings does not eliminate the pain.

The reason we’re losing young people to agnosticism is because we want them to laugh off Jack and the Beanstalk, and revere Jonah in the whale. Good luck with that.

And finally, children need to be told that faith in God is the pursuit of an earthly heaven. Keeping a child’s mind in the clouds is an invitation to making him or her lazy, indifferent and non-productive. My childlike faith demands that I understand and apply that I am here to see God’s will done on earth as it is in heaven.

So to review my three notions:

  • God is a Spirit.
  • I don’t plan on debating whether Jonah lived in a whale, but rather, intend on retrieving the powerful message of the tale.
  • And finally, I will not wait for heaven to see heavenly things done. I will use my life here on earth to simulate my own desire.

There you go.

It begins with rejecting all religion and theology that is god-awful. Get your head out of the book, start looking for the Spirit of God, don’t argue about the Bible, and bring a little bit of heaven down to earth.

You will become a child–ready to romp and play in the Kingdom of God.

The producers of jonathots would humbly request a yearly subscription donation of $10 for this wonderful, inspirational opportunity

Killing is a Dead Issue … January 2, 2013

(1,748)

jon with gun to head

I want to have a mature understanding–with a childlike application.

There you go. That is the power of faith–to possess wisdom but not use it against yourself and others, but instead, apply it in such a way that you are as harmless as a dove.

That’s also what I feel about violence. Let’s get several things straight–children don’t play with guns. Children are taught that guns are not cool. And children are instructed that life has value in all its forms.

A quick story. When I was eleven years old I went to church camp and the grown-up in our cabin who was watching over us brought a hand gun.  He pretended to hide it, but brandished it once or twice–enough so that we were horribly curious, being of that age and immaturity. When one of the boys asked him why he brought the gun, he said is was just in case we run into snakes or bears. Here’s the problem with that–there are no snakes or bears in Central Ohio, and secondly, he left the gun under his pillow when we went out to where there might be snakes or bears, and a quick run back to the cabin would have been impractical.

People who own guns in America are not using them to protect themselves. They would have to be packing heat everyday when they walked down the street–which in most communities is illegal. So if you found yourself in a bank robbery, it would not do you much good to have a gun locked in your safe at home. Even if you had a burglar break into your home in the middle of the night, by the time you got your safe open and your gun out, most of the damage would be done and you would possibly be the only armed person in your home, since most burglars don’t carry weapons because if they get caught, it levies a much higher sentence.

So what is the purpose of all this gun craze? It isn’t the Old West. We don’t have holsters hanging from our waist dangling a Smith and Wesson. The only reason to own a gun is to impress or intimidate.

Smith & Wesson

Smith & Wesson (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

My camp counselor brought his gun to camp to make the kids think he was cool. Actually, it scared me–especially when he would yell at us for not making up our beds. I always wondered if he was going to grab the gun and take care of the problem once and for all.It was intimidating. That’s why we came up with the statement, “If somebody put a gun to my head…” This is not a pleasant greeting. It is intimidation. It’s trying to impress. It’s what we tell our children NOT to do.

For instance, we do not suggest that the solution to bullying in our public schools is to make sure that everybody bullies. We attack the bullies for bullying instead of giving everybody mean things to say to each other to even the score on bullying.

The answer to gun violence in this country, and to crime, is not to arm the populace. The answer is to teach people to disarm situations without killing someone.

I do not think that guns should be illegal. I just believe they need to stop being cool. Just as cigarettes had their heyday, were revealed as being dangerous and relegated to a lesser position in our society, so it should be with the necessary evil of firearms.

A young minister told me he bought a snub-nosed revolver. He was so proud. I bit my lip. His revelation concerning his purchase brought great interest from congregation members–perhaps more focus than he gets from preaching the Golden Rule. He puffed up. He was impressing people.

I shook my head and walked away. I have no judgment for my brother, but I am on a quest this year to be more childlike in my faith, and as I told you–children don’t play with guns. Children shouldn’t think guns are cool. And children should value life … in all its forms.

The producers of jonathots would humbly request a yearly subscription donation of $10 for this wonderful, inspirational opportunity

May… June 20, 2012

(1,552)

“May we pursue this with vigor?”

“It may happen…”

“Maybe…”

One of the great, unique aspects of the Christian faith is the assertion that we all are “to become as little children.” Other philosophies and religions tend to relegate those who have young spirits, bodies and minds to a secondary status until they are granted the approval of maturity. Jesus asked us to reverse that process–to escape the austerity of being “grown-up” and maintain a childlike simplicity. But what is that?

A spiritual, childlike heart is the blessing of continuing to believe even when that particular energy is not always bearing fruit. It is having the maturity to know that the absence of belief–the subtraction of “may” from our lives–does not make us more intelligent or productive, but rather, renders us jaded and cynical. Jaded and cynical people end up stymied in their own fear of failure and lethargy over being disappointed.

There is a third silence that we have to avoid–it is silent doubt.

As I travel this country, I encounter an overwhelming reticence that can only be explained as doubt, which has taken root and removed all of our sensation that “something good may happen.” I don’t know–maybe it’s just a brattiness inside us that doesn’t want to chase down dreams unless we’re guaranteed that they’re going to work. We should know that nothing works all the time. In my mind, the presence of disappointment is the confirmation of God. If life continued to give great benefit to some and detriment to others, I could hardly consider it to be an act of love, and therefore an acknowledgment of God. Balance lies in the fact that good and evil, dark and light, and sunshine and rain are equally distributed to all.

But if we don’t believe that, a doubt enters our soul which is kept silent in order to maintain the integrity of being part of a religious idea. Sitting in a church, I often hear the silent screams of those around me, pleading: “Are we really going to sing one more hymn? Why?” “Will this be over soon?” “I don’t know half the people in this room and I don’t really care to get to know them.” “What does that communion bread and wine really mean anyway?” “If I have to listen to one more Old Testament scripture with unpronounceable names and locations, I think I’ll go crazy.”

But instead of giving voice to these doubts–that they may not believe inGod the Father, maker of heaven and earth”–they maintain silence in an imitation of reverence. That is why Jesus describes a frustrated people, who “praise me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.”

Silent doubt has brought progress in this country to a screeching halt, as we continue to go through the motions of repetition without having any internal confidence that ideas will work or perseverance will win the day. We just don’t believe any more–but saying that out loud is too frightening; yet living with it may be too painful.

The most famous doubter in all of history was named Thomas. But the reason he is granted a status of acceptability is that rather than keeping his feelings to himself, he admitted that he had questions about the validity of the statements that were being shared around him. He said he didn’t believe that Jesus was risen from the dead. Dare I say, there are people in the church and even in the ministry who don’t believe that either, but they would never speak it aloud because to do so would make them seem out of the loop and heretical.

But not Thomas. If he was going to have a doubt, he was going to live it out so it could either be confirmed or disproven. Because of that, Thomas remained as one of the twelve disciples and was able to encounter the resurrected Christ.

Doubt is killing us–not because we have it, but because we mask it with pretense. A silent doubt has taken away our ability to believe in what may be God’s will, what may be a better direction, what may be fruitful and certainly what may need to be done to progress us as people.

If we don’t reveal this silent doubt and tap into faith by realizing that belief is not a guarantee for success, but rather, a door open to possibility, we will continue to go through the motions without any of the personal payoff.

May. We have stalled the vehicle of our own better natures by allowing a silent doubt to steal from us the childlike simplicity of merely continuing to wish, no matter what the results.

There are two things that are certain: (1) life will continue; and (2) life is just better when we believe.

Belief does not guarantee us prosperity, but silent doubt robs us of any tools to excavate it. So if we’re going to have a real sense of the return to a “may” mentality in our spiritual environment, we need to be willing to uncork our doubts and allow them to breathe. There is nothing wrong with wondering why things are the way they are, as long as you don’t pretend that we are doomed to remain impotent.

Just as silent prejudice keeps us from embracing one another and silent surrender takes away the strength to pursue excellence, silent doubt drains our faith and childlike simplicity–which is the only way to actually enter the Kingdom of God. And since the Kingdom of God is within us, we’ve actually closed the door to our own internal potential.

We need to be careful. We are desperately teetering on the brink of having a form of Godliness while denying the power of it. There is only one thing worse than spiritual oblivion and the sensation of being lost, and that is masquerading as part of the sheep, only to end up with the goats.

   

The producers of jonathots would humbly request a yearly subscription donation of $10 for this wonderful, inspirational opportunity

%d bloggers like this: