Cracked 5 … April 6th, 2019

 


Jonathots Daily Blog

(4007)

Cracked 5

Rejected Plans for Spring Break

 

A.  The “Building a Sandcastle” competition at Daytona Beach

 

B.  Starting a diet and exercise program

 

C.  Time with Mom and Dad

 

D.  A “Pirate Battle Reenactment” in Fort Lauderdale

 

E.  A urinary tract infection

 

Cracked 5 Pirate

  
Donate Button
The producers of jonathots would humbly request a yearly subscription donation for this inspirational opportunity 

 

UNTOTALED: Stepping 7–Tackling Laziness (September 4th, 1965) … March 22, 2014

Jonathots Daily Blog  

(2184)

(Transcript)

Starting the seventh grade scared the crap out of me.

Actually, that particular cliché doesn’t fit very well because when you’re entering junior high school in a new building, the idea of any sound or bodily fluid coming out of your being is completely terrifying.

You want to simultaneously be invisible and also appreciated, which of course, is not only socially impossible, but scientifically implausible.

I had spent the week before school began begging my mother to allow me to go out for the football team. She was afraid I would get injured. This was a maternal prophetic sensation, long before the recent onslaught of concussions and head injuries. What was comical, though, about this assertion on her part was that I was nearly six feet tall and weighed three hundred pounds. The coach joked with her, when trying to solicit her support, that it would be more likely that I would hurt other children.

I whined, cajoled, pleaded, promised, praised, complimented and cleaned my room up enough to get her to agree to allow me to try out for the team.

So September 4th, 1965, was not just the first day of horror in the new junior high school. It was also my first day to go out after school and practice with the football team.

The trials continued when they were unable to find a pair of football pants to fit me.  (This was the era when men’s sizes stopped at extra-large, and anyone who needed anything bigger must order it from the sheep herders of Tibet.) So I wore a pair of tennis shoes and blue Dickey work pants to work out with the other guys, who were in suitable apparel. (They did find a helmet that fit my head, since the term fat-head is merely an urban legend.)

It became obvious to me immediately, on that small practice field, what I liked and what I didn’t.

  • I loved the game.
  • I loved tackling.
  • I loved thinking about what was going to happen next.

On the other hand, I hated exercise in all of its contorted, convoluted and fastidiously constructed forms. After all, every exercise program is really geared to skinny people–even the ones which insist they are trying to appeal to the obese. Their speculations always exceed our limitations.

I hated sprints, calisthenics, too much running of any type, and all the drills which they insisted were essential for becoming a great football player.

I endured the sport for three years, but finally my laziness regarding exercise overtook my love of the gridiron.

Maybe if I’d had the right kick in the pants from an authority figure, or perhaps mercy at the right moments and toughness at others, I might have continued playing the game. I don’t know.

But because I didn’t tackle laziness on the football field, it took me too many years to overcome that gooey, drippy vice that drags one down, draining off potential.

So the next time you run across a kid who has ability, but not much drive, please don’t assume that you should leave him alone.

I was left alone. And fascinatingly enough–it was just lonely.

Donate Button

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

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.

The Running List… October 18, 2012

(1,672)

Live from October 1st filming

Eleven days ago, when I awakened with the startling notification that my legs had decided to become non-supportive of my endeavors, my first instinct was to become discouraged. (I personally relish discouragement. It is comforting. Discouragement is the emotion we select when we really don’t want to look much deeper into the situation, but instead, would prefer to believe that we are the offended party.) It does have its dark side, however. It only has one door. Yes, it has an entrance but provides no exit, while simultaneously dimming all the light around you. So I immediately rejected discouragement and instead leaped to my running list.

My running list has five items: God, Mother Nature, people, friends and me.

Those are the elements, really, that interact with me every day of my life, since I rarely have to have a personal interchange with a goat or an elephant.

God. Who is He? God is a spirit. What do we know about spirits? Absolutely nothing–except they’re not physical. So it’s understandable that when God thinks about me, He’s thinking about my heart and spirit instead of about how I need to shed some pounds, start an exercise program and avoid pasta and salt. He is a spirit who became creative. Even to this day, we can tell something is truly spiritual if it was birthed from a creative place. And finally, being a spirit that’s creative, He has afforded us the opportunity to receive Him as a Father if we so desire, by faith.

So what did God think about my legs? Not much.

I moved on to Mother Nature. She is the enforcer, the practicality, the earthly intelligence and the evolver of planet life. She tries to create an even playing field, which requires some rules, followed by surprises. After all, if people only learned the rules, then we would just be a bunch of obedient robots, but if life were just full of surprises, we would be ducking for the cave every time we heard thunder. It’s balanced. Mother Nature has no relationship with me at all. She sees me as she sees everyone else, and because of that she is of great value in my life. What does Mother Nature feel about my legs? Mother Nature does not like sixty-year-old fat men who occasionally splurge on their eating like they’re eighteen and carry out the schedule of a twenty-five-year-old troubadour. She has an ax to grind with me.

So let’s review. God loves me; Mother Nature thinks I’m a prick. Okay. Let’s move on to people.

I love people because they have one moving part: they think about themselves. If you’re offended by that, you will probably not find yourself to be much of a people person. If you expect high-sounding virtue and great generosity of spirit, you probably will come to the conclusion that Homo sapiens should be wiped from the face of the earth. But once you understand that people are self-involved, then you can find a way to become involved with their self. So what do people think about my legs? Once again, not very much. They might consider me weakened if they saw me in a wheelchair, until I could demonstrate that I still bring value to the tribe and therefore, blessing to their teepee.

How about friends? Remember, friends are just people who decide to make you one of the things of their self-involvement. In other words, you are ONE of the ingredients (so don’t get puffed up). What do my friends feel about my legs? Being friends, and often related to me, they want to make sure they say something intelligent and meaningful. Also, just in case I fall over dead, they want to make it clear to everyone around them that they warned me. Their involvement is most valuable, with precious junctures of tenderness and prayers that go up to my Father, who would love to see my heart and spirit live on.

So let’s catch up and keep score. God does not really focus on my bad legs, but rather, is concerned about my heart, spirit and maintaining a personal relationship with me. Mother Nature couldn’t care less about a personal relationship, but instead, wants me to follow the rules better, and then she will consider whether I get to hang around. People are busy with themselves and only consider my legs a weakness if I do, or if I refuse to be of benefit to their pursuits. Family loves me, and as they think about themselves, they include me because I have become part of them and they want to make sure they have done everything reasonable to assist me without becoming overly zealous.

Then there’s me. I, being human, am also self-involved. So I am afforded two choices when it comes to dealing with affliction: Self-awareness or self-pity. Let me not be too noble here–I occasionally indulge in self-pity when I find I have too much time on my hands and get in some sort of bleak place, where I only see the lesser possibilities for my soul.

But self-awareness is a delicious combination of hope, humor and honesty. Hope in the sense that we know that as long as there’s life, there’s always a chance for something to change. Humor because we know that change will be slow and often comical. And honesty because nothing happens until we’re dealing with real, hard-core facts instead of wishes and dreams.

I decided that it was useless for me to pray for a miracle unless I had already started one. So for eleven days I have been on a fabulous food regimen, using exercise prudently, resting, drinking lots of water, and just enjoying myself to the hilt in the process.And then I have employed the following philosophy: the best way for me to honor God is by respecting Mother Nature while simultaneously attempting to turn all the people I meet into my friends.

There’s the key.

You can’t come to God and pray for a miracle if you’re ignoring the principles, the guidelines and the system of His creation established through Mother Nature. I do not know if I’m going to get better, but I do know that the process to getting better is to honor God by following Mother Nature and turning all the people I meet into my friends.

It makes the “me” part of my running list less cranky, less self-piteous and less boring. That’s where I am right now.

Have you checked your running list lately? God is waiting, Mother Nature will teach you if you listen, people are available if you’re interested in them, and friends are valuable if you give them direction on where your heart wants to go. After all, it’s not that complicated. What complicates life is when we believe too much in God but ignore His nature, or we don’t believe in God … and are stuck with ourselves.

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

Contrary… December 28, 2011

(1,376) 
Jonathan in Miami

“Contrary to popular opinion …”

Actually, nobody is particularly interested in that. But there is nothing we enjoy today that was not, at one time, contrary to popular opinion.

  • The I-phone was, at one time, the “what the hell were you thinking?” phone.
  • Civil rights was certainly more, “go back to the colored section, write a letter to the editor and we’ll get back to you.”
  • Computers were deemed to be the fodder for science fiction movies, instead of ways for grandmas to communicate with their grandchildren.

Everything of quality is contrary. I wish I could shout that, but it would make me seem … well, contrary. For after all, shouting is contrary to the standards of today’s thinking (unless you’re a politician).

I have learned one valuable lesson in my journey through the roads and passages of human life. The things that we deem to be difficult, or “sent to harass us,” are actually the seeds sent by God to bless us. It would be impossible for God to be just and fair and sprinkle only well-explained possibilities, joys and emotional marshmallow cream over the earth.

For instance, I certainly didn’t teach my children to be better people by lavishing them with gifts, lightening their loads or telling them that everything they did was perfect.  To help my children grow up, I inconvenienced them. I gave them chores, I set household rules (which they decided were unnecessary) and when they chose to break them, there were punishments that followed. They often considered me a tyrant–an irrelevant relic of former times and an uncaring personage who was more interested in maintaining order than in their personal needs. Isn’t this exactly the way most people feel about God–that He’s a tyrant, a relic of former times and unconcerned about our personal feelings?

As a good Father, once He introduces any type of inconvenience, we use it as a stumbling block for our relationship with Him and walk around baffled over why life has suddenly become so painfully difficult. To understand how this system works, we must agree on three things:

1. The only way to make life fair is to make it equally restrictive for everyone. Without this, we create an atmosphere where easy solutions create lazy, unmotivated and uncreative beings.

2. Everyone has complete free will or the whole thing is a joke. If at any point we believe that God is stepping in to perform His will against our ways, we lose the sense that this planet is evenly balanced with more energy assessed towards those who seek to find, knock to have it opened and ask to receive.

3. Don’t walk away from what you think was sent to harass, but instead, harness any available input. I have become successful by picking up what other people don’t want, fear or deem to be useless–and have gained treasure from it. If you’re going to wait around for everything to come to you fully assembled, polished, well-painted, in a lovely box with a bow–you will spend most of your time doing nothing and the rest of your time complaining about nothing to do.

There is a “harass factor” to life. Opportunity comes with a contrary nature. It is never what we expect, rarely what we want and only occasionally even feasible. It demands that intelligent people of good cheer harness what’s presented without complaining and use it well until better options arrive.

For example, I have used a butter knife as a screwdriver, and in doing so, was completely content–but soon found that someone ran to offer their screwdriver to assist in the project. I will tell you this: no one will even offer you a screwdriver if you’re just lamenting what you screwed up and you’re not actually trying to screw it down. Just as God rewards those who diligently seek him, human beings reward each other by offering assistance to those who are trying to work with what they have instead of rejecting it and stomping away, pouting.

Get this straight–life is contrary. It is that way so that it can actually be fair to everyone. It is a door rather than a house. It is a penny rather than a dollar. It is a smile instead of an open invitation. It is a greeting rather than a banquet.

Life is sent to harass, hoping to find determined souls who will harness the potentials that exist while waiting for reinforcements. And what happens if the reinforcements don’t arrive? You will astound yourself with your own abilities to adapt.

I began exercising two days ago. I thought on the second day it would be easier. It was harder. My muscles seemed to be aware of my devious plan to engage them and became defensive. They ached and my joints creaked. But I persevered through Day Two, and woke up this morning expecting to be rewarded with rejuvenated energy. I’ve never felt so miserable in all my life. It took me years to get out of shape, yet I was looking for a forty-eight hour reclamation. I am hoping it will not take me years to get back in shape, but I CERTAINLY know that I am thirty days or more from having any benefit or feeling any purpose at all. Will I make it? I have a chance if I understand that life is contrary because God is good.  And if I take what was meant to harass and harness its better parts, I can certainly count on people, life and God to more quickly come to my aid.

Brats always lose. The squeaky wheel may get the grease, but eventually people put it in the garage because it’s just too high maintenance.

  • God will harass. I need to harness.
  • Life is contrary. I need to comply.
  • Nothing is simple. I need to simplify it.
  • We are all in search of what is fair. What we get is the next quandary.

So contrary to what people think–contrary is what people get.

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

Jonathan wrote the gospel/blues anthem, Spent This Time, in 1985, in Guaymas, Mexico. Take a listen:

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

To see books written by Jonathan, click the link below! You can peruse and order if you like!

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

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: