Pockets… March 27, 2014

Jonathots Daily Blog  

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cave

Safe places to hide

Perhaps an escape

Surround yourself with fellow-agreers

Discourage strife through eliminating discussion

A consensus of repetitive ideas

A unity in smallness

A feeling of blocking difference is divinely inspired

A request for hope to depart from your village

A surrender to adequacy

A jarring alarm over being challenged

A corner where enemies can be easily detected

A decision to remain uncertain

A selected night without fear of the bump

A purposeful retreat with no battle in sight

An exclusion of simplicity to extol the glory of complexity

A requirement of a unanimous vote

Squeezing a dollar bill, pleading it will not leap from your grasp

Laughing at transition

Criticizing creativity

Believing that belief has no responsibility to become more believable

Grasping at straws but never drinking

Imitating emotion in favor of true encounter

Praising darkness for fear of the light

Praying to gain silence

Silent to acquire peace

Peaceful to run from questions

Pockets, not resistance

Reservation

Avoiding the exposure to ideas

Which just might revive the dead.

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

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The On Must Go Show … September 23, 2013

Jonathots Daily Blog

(2015)

onFuzzy Wuzzy was a bear. At least, that’s what I’ve heard.

But last night, in the middle of my show, when my electronic piano went fuzzy, it was very hard to bear. Bluntly, it’s difficult to be a workman without tools. Maybe we should not be too vulnerable to the world of miracle machines, but unfortunately, we ALL suffer under the addiction.

I made what I thought was a “quick fix” and tried to do one additional song, but my piano had figuratively stomped out of the room and called it an early evening.

What next?

The good folk who had come out so graciously to see and hear us did not need to be disappointed by my failing keyboard. Also, in my opinion, it was not necessary to involve them in the dilemma since they probably have sufficient difficulties of their own.

You see, it’s not so much that “the show must go on,” but instead, “the on must go show.”

If you’re going to call yourself a craftsman–someone who has achieved a level of expertise–it is your job to be “on.” What does that mean to me?

To be “on” is to know what and why I am doing what I’m doing. When I forget that, I become simpy, obnoxious and double-minded.

An electronic keyboard throwing a fit onstage doesn’t have anything to do with my calling. It is my duty to stay “on.”

So then I am ready to go. I love people who really understand the word “go.” It means “keep moving towards a solution.”

If you have an emotional breakdown every time you see a breakdown in your plans, you will be useless to yourself and others. It was my job to come up with a solution on the fly with regard to my temperamental eighty-eight keys. I did not look to the audience; I did not look to my stage partner, and honestly, dear friends, I didn’t look to God.

Even though I believe that He is constantly divinely inspired, I do NOT think He has hung out a shingle advertising, “Piano Repair.”

It was MY “go” and mine alone. I needed to move towards a solution. I had approximately three seconds of dead air available to achieve a positive direction. Here’s what I did: I rose from my piano and quietly moved over to the grand sitting nearby and continued my escapade. I made no explanation; I didn’t apologize. Truthfully, I didn’t even acknowledge that I had a problem, which brings me to the final point–“show.”

Here’s what I think a “show” is: don’t make your job and your life everybody else’s business.

After all, it’s only “sharing” if people are interested in what you’re saying. After that, it’s boring. It was not the privilege of that audience to be privy to my tribulation. They were there to join into a common experience of inspiration and entertainment.

I wish I could pass this on to politicians–that it’s their job to be “on,” to move forward to solution, and to understand that it’s not the fault of the American people that they’re inept.

Every preacher should realize that when he or she arrives on Sunday morning, they need to be “on” and go towards Spirit–and not show the congregation all the frailties of finance or the frayed carpet in the narthex.

It’s a part of growing up.

I don’t know if some of the people in last night’s audience even knew there was a lack. Good. For after all, they don’t need another concern, do they?

So I pass this along to you, not to lead you to believe that I’m special or a dynamic professional. What I did last night was basic–basic humanity.

The on must go show.

It’s the ability to rejoice in your burden ,,, and be grateful that you’ve been given the honor of carrying it.

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

Please contact Jonathan’s agent, Jackie Barnett, at (615) 481-1474, for information about personal appearances or scheduling an event

When They Got the Mike … November 27, 2012

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He came running into the church, grabbed my arm, pulled me outside, took me around the side of the building, opened his Bible and began to read. He was Mike. He was my friend who was one of those bizarre mixtures of annoying and amusing.

Now, Mike reading the Bible had absolutely no theological motivation at all–I knew that Mike must have found something questionable. And I was right.

Mike had discovered that the Bible contained the word “pisseth.” Even funnier to him was the fact that the Bible suggested that it was really dumb to “piss against the wall.” Splash-back, I assume. He was laughing uncontrollably as he shared the passage.

That was Mike. If any sentence spoken aloud offered a double entendre, Mike would find it. Mike loved to giggle at words. Mike loved to take normally somber situations and turn them into a comedy club because someone said something that could be interpreted another way. You can imagine what he was like during sex education class in high school. He giggled so loudly that he had to be escorted out of the room by two teachers.

I thought Mike was just going to be an immature guy I met during the process of growing up, and that when I finally became an adult, all the “Mikes” of the world would turn into–well, Michael.  You know. Maturity.

But it’s not so.

I am going to make a bold statement: Every book ever written, including the Bible, the Qur’an (the Koran), the Book of Mormon and any number of presumably spiritual volumes, is full of statements that can be taken many ways–and are even occasionally embarrassing.

For instance, I tighten up with discomfort when the Epistle of Timothy is read and Paul suggests that women are supposed to be subject to men because they were the ones who fell to Satan in Eden and are responsible for the decline of humankind. Yet you and I both know there are “Mikes” walking around who pronounce this erroneous idea to be as just as holy doctrine as “love your neighbor as yourself.”

There are millions of Muslims who believe the better parts of the Qur’an and ignore the portions that are out-dated and without practical use. But there are those “Mikes” even in the Arab world who find words to justify hate, bigotry and murder.

And God knows, there are folks who read the Constitution of the United States and discover all the phrases that support their particular form of backwardness, extolling them as noble gestures instead of passed-over practices. The Constitution does tell us we have the right to bear arms, but at no time does it tell us we have the need. The Constitution informs us that we have the opportunity to pursue our own happiness, but it also warns that we have a greater requirement–to chase down the common good.

I guess you and I will have to deal with all those people and organizations who “got the Mike.”  For as long as people laugh about “pisseth” being in the Bible, there will have to be someone who comes along who finds the truly important meanings and brings them to the forefront, while warning us all that anything that’s been touched by human hands–even if we think it’s divinely inspired–smells of “people.”

My choice? I choose to believe in what is still human-friendly, scientifically confirmed and God blessed.

So women–relax. Just like both sexes worked together to fall from grace in Eden, if we work together now, we just might be able to plant a new garden.

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

God for Dummies … March 21, 2012

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There are some people who read the Bible who have never read anything else. There are those individuals who read the Bible mainly to find contradictions and pieces of nastiness to confirm their own lack of belief. There are some who peruse the volume for moments of comfort and reassurance. And there are a handful who use it as a way to express their supremacy over assumed less fortunate infidels.

May I make something clear? The Bible is not a book about God. Matter of fact, it may be one of the most inefficient places to actually find God–unless you bring a heart that really wants to dig up the truth. The Bible is a six thousand-year journey, chronicling what men and women have thought about God in their present moment, commencing with Job, warts and all, and ending with John on the Isle of Patmos, having a funky vision.

So please do not think you can hand a Bible over to someone and assume you have done a magnificent job of leading him or her to God. If you will allow me, let me present God for Dummies.

The first thing I would suggest to anyone who wants to read the Bible and truly understand it, is that every time you come across the word “God” or “Jehovah or capital H for He, just insert the word “Love.” If after doing this, you discover that the passage doesn’t make sense–that love not could actually have performed the deed–then you have uncovered a juncture of time when people were evolving towards understanding instead of dwelling there.

For instance, “For Love so loved the world that Love gave His only begotten son.” You see? That makes sense.

It all makes sense as long as we have an updated definition of love. Love has three parts:

1. Committment. I am here and I’m not leaving, even if you have an ugly day.

2. Affection. I feel a connection with you and it has tenderized my heart to reach out and love you; and all my love does come with a hug.

3. And finally, honesty. If I see you doing something that is hurting you or destroying you, I will step in and try to help you get away from this piece of insanity. You see, if you don’t add honesty in, it’s not really love.

So I believe that God is committed to me. “Nothing can separate me from the love of Love (God).”

And I believe that He has great affection for me. “And Love (God) looked on what Love (He) had created in man and woman and said that it was good.”

But I also believe that God comes along and challenges me when I’m doing something stupid that is going to destroy my human experience. “And Love (God) chastises those Love (He) loves.”

So likewise, when you run across people who try to make God ignorant because He hates knowledge, or bigoted because He favors Jews over Gentiles, or mean because Sodom and Gomorrah had too many “queens,” or strict because the Ten Commandments weren’t suggestions after all, or vengeful–returning on a big, white pony to judge the quick and the dead and cast “‘dem bad boys into outer darkness” … you might just want to stop and realize that if He possessed any of those particular attributes, we all would literally be in a helluva lot of trouble.

Yes, in our understanding of God for Dummies, we must recognize that if a Supreme Being is picky at all, our chance for any kind of acceptance is dim. And honestly, do you really want to go and spend eternity with someone who kills little children, destroys whole races of people and thinks that certain clumps of humanity are abominations to Him and on top of that–doesn’t like shell-fish?

Sounds like a drag to me.

So as much as the fundamentalists would object to the fact that God is just love, I present to you that if He’s any other derivation, He is completely beyond our grasp or embrace. And therefore–what is the point?

Because if you think you’re reading the Bible and finding God, you are similar to someone who has completed Gone with the Wind and thinks they understand the Civil War, or someone who finished the Wizard of Oz and believes he is prepared to predict tornadoes.

God for Dummies is simple. When you see His name, insert “Love” in its place. If the conclusion of what is stated about Him in that particular passage doesn’t fall under the categories of commitment, affection or honesty, then let’s be candid–the writer just had a bad day.

Is it too child-like? Absolutely. I have never seen the process of complication transform any situation to a better status. Feel free to continue to read the Bible as long as you substitute the word “Love” every time you see “God.” It is not difficult to do and it will probably cause you to understand that certain verses, although important to the transition of discovery, have become obsolete–to be replaced by others that followed later with more understanding. Is the Bible divinely inspired? Count on it–because love inspires us on to greater realization, even when we’re going through dumb phases.

God for Dummies–just put “Love” where “God” is. For after all, even atheists need love.

And remember, where it doesn’t fit into being committed, affectionate and honest … just smile and turn the page.

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Below is the first chapter of Jonathan Richard Cring’s stunning novel entitled Preparing a Place for Myself—the story of a journey after death. It is a delicious blend of theology and science fiction that will inspire and entertain. I thought you might enjoy reading it. After you do, if you would like to read the book in its entirety, please click on the link below and go to our tour store. The book is being offered at the special price of $4.99 plus $3.99 shipping–a total of $8.98. Enjoy.

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

Sitting One

 I died today. 

I didn’t expect it to happen.  Then again, I did—well, not really.

No, I certainly didn’t expect it.

I’ve had moments of clarity in my life.  Amazingly enough, many of them were in the midst of a dream. For a brief second I would know the meaning of life or the missing treatment to cure cancer.  And then as quickly as it popped into my mind it was gone. I really don’t recollect dying.  Just this unbelievable sense of clear headedness—like walking into a room newly painted and knowing by the odor and brightness that the color on the wall is so splattering new that you should be careful not to touch it for fear of smearing the design. The greatest revelation of all? 

Twenty-five miles in the sky time ceases to exist.

The planet Pluto takes two hundred and forty-eight years to circle the sun. It doesn’t give a damn. 

The day of my death was the day I became free of the only burden I really ever had.  TIME.

Useless.

Time is fussy.  Time is worry. 

Time is fear.  Time is the culprit causing human-types to recoil from pending generosity. 

There just was never enough time. 

Time would not allow it.  Remember—“if time permits …”

Why if time permits?  Why not if I permit?  Why not if I dream?  Why not if I want?  Why does time get to dictate to me my passage? 

It was time that robbed me of my soulful nature.    It was time that convinced me that my selfishness was needed. 

I didn’t die. The clock in me died, leaving spirit to tick on.  

So why don’t we see the farce of time?  Why do we allow ourselves to fall under the power of the cruel despot?  Yes, time is a relentless master—very little wage for much demand.

I died today. 

Actually … a piece of time named after me was cast away.

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