Iz and Pal (Bedouin Buddies)


Iz and Pal

Jonathots Daily Blog

(4029)

Sitting Seventeen

The desert has little to offer—mainly the presence of persistence.

After Karin left Iz and Pal, they were suddenly overtaken by the sleep of exhaustion—just two boys, lying flat on their backs in the ragged remains of a tent, deeply asleep, overcome by worry and woe, welcoming the needed rest, yet nervous about the pending dreams.

And there were dreams.

Iz floated, his body upheld in a liquidy glue of moisture, suspended a few meters above his family’s home. He tried to flip himself over, to look into the windows and see Pada, but he was held down, some force holding his arms, squeezing his legs, forbidding movement. Then it was as if the glue became thicker and oozed around his nostrils, threatening to suffocate the life from him. Struggling, he loosened himself and fell, landing on the roof of his home, hearing the crack of a bone in his right leg.

Voices ascended to the rooftop where he was impaled, writhing in pain. They were mentioning his name. It was “Jubal this” and “Jubal that.” Nothing he could actually discern, nor words that were perceptible. More an angry, disapproving tone.

He was in pain. Then, all the bones in his body started to break, one by one. Gradually the agony was displaced by oblivion. He melted like a piece of ice on a hot summer’s day, his body dribbling down the walls, through the window, pooling in a puddle on the floor of his home. It seemed he was all there—eyes, nose, hands, ears. But each part separated—a toe where an ear should be, a mouth replacing a knee. Gleaming, watery, flat against the ground, he was trying to see, attempting to find Pada.

Then there was a sound—a whoosh of a broom. Dust flew around his puddle of life. He choked—coughing, wheezing. The broom was sweeping him, pushing him toward the door. He splattered down the steps of his home, gushing his life away and landed on the bottom step in a splat—but somehow, once again, whole. Free of all broken bones and molten flesh.

Iz tried to stand but could not. Instead he walked backward on his hands like a crab, reconnoitering his way into the street, which was busy with cars and buses. Yet no one saw him. No one noticed the crab boy creeping along. All at once, a giant hand wearing a yellow shirt-sleeve reached down and picked him up by his right arm, yanking him into the air and placing him at the gate of what appeared to be a great shining city—an ancient site. There was carvings of gold and statues of granite and cedar. He did not know any of the figures, just that they were large, massive and overwhelming.

The gate suddenly opened, and he heard laughter. No—giggling. It was much younger. Free, absent of trouble, broken bones and gelatin flesh. Then a dog, barking at the gate, and men with beards who came and packed him up, carrying him into the city, as a beautiful woman with long, black hair stepped forward and kissed him. It was not the smooch of a sister, but rather, the caress of a friend who would be a lover or at least as much as a twelve-year-old mind could conjure.

He was giddy with the sights and sounds. He was stimulated even more by the woman’s lips. The bearded men carried him on to a huge castle, where he entered the portals and seemed to disappear forever more.

Iz awoke with a start. It was nighttime.

There was a single candle lit, and Pal sat in the shadows, staring at him. “Did you have a dream?” he asked.

Iz was not sure whether he was awake, or if this was part of the continuing saga.

Pal spoke again. “I had a dream.”

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Jesonian … July 14th, 2018

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(3733)

In Luke the 7th Chapter, a Pharisee named Simon invited Jesus to dinner.

Why?

As the story rolls out, it becomes obvious that it wasn’t a “special” invitation. Jesus arrived to a very generic, all-male environment, believing that he was a special guest, but was ushered in to be seated as if he’s one of hundreds at a Golden Corral Buffet.

You see, Simon wanted to be “the guy.” He wanted to be that fellow who was open-minded enough to extend an invitation to Jesus. But at the same time, he was sure to portray that he was not getting on board with the Carpenter’s crowd.

Nasty politics. Insincere feelings.

So Jesus plopped down to have dinner, thoroughly ignored.

Except for one woman. She was a whore.  Luke makes it clear that she was not an out of work prostitute, nor one who had decided to forsake her profession.

Matter of fact, we are led to believe that she had just come from the job site to see Jesus. She probably still had the smell of a man on her. She certainly had the look of evil to those religious men who had presumably gathered to consider the turn of some phrase uttered by a prophet a thousand years ago.

She brought a gift–ointment. She brought her tears, and she used her hair to dry those tears as they drizzled on his feet.

It was a sensual experience.

It was so intimate that the Pharisees, especially Simon, became infuriated that Jesus did not stop the awkwardness of the moment.

They whispered. “If he were truly a prophet, he would know what kind of woman she is…”

When Jesus realized they were critiquing the woman’s gentleness and mocking her right to be considered, he spoke up.

First, he asks Simon’s permission to speak to him. He doesn’t yell. He doesn’t offer counsel where it is not wanted. He asks for the grace to share.

And then he explains the three essentials to reaching people–whether it’s for God or for business.

He tells Simon, “When I came here you offered me no water, you gave me no kiss and you provided no oil. Yet this woman has given me the water of her tears, has kissed my feet with her warmth and anointed me with oil she brought in her alabaster box.”

Water. Kiss. Oil.

All humans need all three of these.

We need water to be cleansed. We need water to drink. We need water to be refreshed, instead of having things withheld, leaving us thirsty.

Simon thought they were going to have a great conversation over dinner about their disagreements. Jesus said, “You don’t get it, dude. It’s about water. It’s about offering a kiss.”

Intimacy.

I, for one, am sick and tired of ministry that has no connection. It takes more than three or four scriptures being read aloud for us to feel caressed.

The human race has not failed. Rather, the messengers of God have settled for meetings in dark rooms to discuss minutia.

The woman gave Jesus a kiss and he said it was good.

There is no ministry without intimacy. If you don’t plan on looking deeply into someone’s eyes, drying their tears and hugging them, then quit. Save yourself the aggravation of performing religious duties that have become meaningless.

And finally, it was the oil–the oil of gladness, the oil of healing.

It touched Jesus.

How magnificent is it to know that you are a woman who has just risen from the bed of being with a lover, and worked up the gumption to come to Jesus’ feet humbly, admitting your confusion, and know that you moved him?

Ministry is not about theology.

Ministry is not about church.

Ministry is not about praise and worship.

It’s about bringing the water for cleansing, the kiss for intimacy and the oil for healing.

Jesus did not come to Earth to explain Heaven.

Jesus came to Earth so we once and for all could make sense of Earth.

*****

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PoHymn: A Rustling in the Stagnant … August 24th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(3043)

PoHymn Mortal

The Dignity of Every Mortal

I always flip so I won’t flop

I continue the drip until my last drop

I dream ’til I smile to forget for a while

That I am a jerk, churning out work

 

I seek for a sign to challenge the Divine

Wondering why, yet failing to try

I simply maintain and choose to refrain

Life is the same–I’m not to blame.

 

I yearn for a kiss–and then I miss

The lips of my steady, I’m never quite ready

To pucker and peck–oh, what the heck

It drives me insane, so then I complain.

 

I refuse to address my unholy mess

But grumble at others, pronouncing my druthers

Looking for an excuse to justify my misuse

Master of my fate, unless it’s second-rate

 

So often caught and trapped in my thought

Perceiving myself wise, snagged by my lies

Yet humble becomes the heavenly portal

To save the dignity of every mortal.

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PoHymn: A Rustling in the Stagnant … June 15th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(2973)

PoHymn June 15

Unclean

He said it would be easy

Not difficult at all

Just to do a somersault

Pretend you took a fall

But I found it hard

Failed to make the team

And heard a snicker or two

I was odd, it would seem

 

She wanted a kiss

Her friends pressed her to try

Yet I was terrified

Not really knowing why

But I agreed to lock my lips

With this fine, willing lass

We bumped our teeth together

I felt like such an ass

 

My first day on the job

My boss explained the routine

He seemed such a gentle soul

No signs of being mean

But when I blew the deal

And ruined the daily plan

He yelled at me with vigor

And called me a clumsy man

 

Odd, ass and clumsy

Seemed to be my lot

So the preacher patted my shoulder

Said, “Be thankful for what you got.”

Finding his advice not so nice

I asked for God’s dominion

A brief delay, then a response

He gave me His opinion.

 

“Don’t worry so much and be uptight

In the quest for what is right

For there is nothing you have seen

Which I have made that is unclean.”

 

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PoHymn: A Rustling in the Stagnant … May 4th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(2924)

PoHymn Oh God

Oh, God

Someone wants to touch me

Chilling

A kiss is near my lips

Exhilarating

A friend has chosen to remain

Invigorating

An embrace warms me

Breathtaking

Eyes gazing at me with passion

Trembling

A whisper of warmth on my cheek

Seduction

The fragrance of a lover aroused

Edenic

Slowly gliding toward connection

Spinning

A fevered sweat tingling on my brow

Heated

Hands seeking healing affection

Probing

Persistent, yearning, heart-pounding

A ragged breath

Lingering, mingling, enjoining

Treasuring

Sweeter, rhythmic, faster

Saturated

Panting, groping…release

Oh, God

Thou art mindful

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PoHymn: A Rustling in the Stagnant… October 14th, 2015

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(2722)

Is Not

Is Not

Screaming is not talking

Believing is not living

Quoting is not accepting

Hoping is not doing

Laughing is not joy

Praying is not hugging

Learning is not applying

Thinking is not feeling

Liberty is not freedom

Apathy is not consent

Working is not creating

Money is not wealth

Failings, not mistaken

Looking is not seeing

Having is not listening

As a kiss is not a caress

Following is not loyalty

Humility is not timidity

Patriotism is not nationalism

Knowledge is not wisdom

Yet God is love.

 

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Untotaled: Stepping 28 (September 14th, 1966) Cindy Kerns… August 23, 2014

Jonathots Daily Blog

(2330)

(Transcript)

Fat boy, locker room, peer pressure, fear of inadequacy, dirty jokes, girl talk, not enough information.

This was my life on September 14th. I was in search of bragging rights. Very simply, I needed a girlfriend.

Even though I was just a kid, I had reached an age where if I didn’t get some experience with the girl crowd very soon, I would be considered queer in every way.

So I picked Cindy Kerns. She was a year older than me, from another school and attended my church. The best way to describe her is to tell you that her mother called her a “flower.” The pastor’s wife referred to her as a “late bloomer.” But I knew the guys on my football team would think she was stink weed.

(All the terms have a botanical source, but certainly different interpretations.)

I knew I could get Cindy interested in me. I was no expert with girls, but because she followed me around and swooned a little bit when I was present, I figured she was interested. She was sweet.

So here was my plan: make my boast after showering, tell them about Cindy, and then acquire a picture from Cindy of one of her other friends from school–a cheerleader–which I could show to my friends instead of the real picture of my actual girlfriend. Then I could make lots of claims and look cool.

Amazingly enough, it came off without a hitch.

I don’t know why Cindy didn’t get suspicious about me requesting pictures of other girls from her school. I guess she just thought I was interested in her friends. She only asked for one picture–mine.

It made me feel bad, but not as bad as I would feel if I had to show my friends a picture of Cindy instead of some unknown beauty from down the road.

Once football season was over and I didn’t have to deal with these guys with their macho jargon on an everyday basis, I dumped Cindy.

But in that brief two-and-a-half month period, I grew to like her. I learned when to kiss, how to kiss and things to say to a woman at just the right times.

Adolescence is a terrible time to try to be a human being. In an attempt to become something that you probably will never be, you can really hurt other people from becoming what they could be.

So I would like to apologize to Cindy (who I am sure by now wouldn’t even remember who I am). And I would also like to apologize to the girl whose picture I used to impress my friends.

After all, it’s unfair to carry on a relationship with a stranger by photograph.

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