PoHymn: A Rustling in the Stagnant … August 10th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog


PoHymn Seated


I hope I did not scare

You with my wheelchair

It’s just my legs are sore

From all the weight I bore

Crossing this American scene

Since I was just nineteen

First appeared my song

Then the books came along

I saw my movies on the screen

A symphony born, sweet, serene

I raised a house full of boys

Suffered the trials, blessed by joys

A feeling–a calling within my soul

A deeper wish to make me whole

Yes, my heart is full of humble praise

My soul is young and quite ablaze

My mind reaches–ideas to seize

But I’m a bit weak at the knees

You might think I should rest a spell

A doctor’s care might do me well

But the fields are ripe and ready, you see

For laborers to come–is that not me?

Then please forgive my weakened frame

And not consider me a shame

I will tell you of good common sense

And soothe the terror that makes us tense

And find our hope in one another

You’re my sister, you’re my brother

So don’t you worry–all is well

Let’s join together … and change this hell.

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PoHymn: A Rustling in the Stagnant

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February 27, 2013


I love because it’s important and not easy

I am a father because children came along and needed someone to appear like he knew what he was doing

I am creative because repetition is the wallpaper of hell

I believe in God because sometimes a fruit basket is not enough to comfort my friends

I chase dreams to outrun the nightmares

I welcome strangers because they are related to God

I laugh more than I cry because tears are messy

I limp on ahead because my knees gave up too soon

I challenge others, hoping they will return the favor

I exhort because effort and excellence give me a thrill

I perform because I have not yet been adequately replaced

I keep traveling because the road, and need, never stop

I live and breathe because air is available, hopes are alive and God is patient

I die because the story continues with a new cast

I think, therefore … I’m remarkable

I remember why so I won’t judge this world by the present solitary moment


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Sixty-Eight Days… December 16, 2012


Jon Signing

In search of a miracle.

Which one of these better defines a miracle? A left-legless man grows a new limb, or a left-legless man grows the will and intelligence to still find a way to get around and be valuable. Probably some of you may try to be cute by saying, “Both would be miracles. One’s just bigger.”

There IS only one miracle–it is called life.

But don’t take my word for it. Just drive to Connecticut and ask any of the young parents who lost children this week through the injustice of the murdering rage of an infidel in Newtown. They will tell you. The miracle is life. They would love to have back every annoying question posed to them at inopportune times by their over-curious young’uns.

Yet short days earlier they would have told you that a miracle would be an improvement on their finance or maybe getting that second mortgage on their house–or picking up a couple extra thousand dollars for Christmas.

Sixty-eight days ago I realized that I could not walk anymore. I mean, I could still kind of creep along, but it was painful, ugly and too slow for even Joe. And my balance was gone. I prayed. Yes–unashamedly, I besought God for a miracle.

Sitting here this morning, I can tell you that I have received it. The miracle is that I’m alive. A second miracle is that I’m healthy and still doing what I’ve always done, with just as much panache and style.

The ability to define “miracle” may be the most important step any one of us takes. It leads us to the doorstep of another important revelation: understanding responsibility.

I have been 175 pounds overweight for my entire adult life. If you multiply that 175 pounds times even twenty years, you come up with 3500 extra pounds of pressure that has been placed on my knees in just two decades. That would be similar to walking outside and putting a car on my back and trying to take two steps. You see what I mean?

I have a responsibility in my own need for a miracle. It is the fruit of repentance that I must bring to confirm to myself, the world around me, and ultimately, to God–that I am serious about receiving newness of life.

For sixty-eight days I have stayed faithful to a plan of eating that has now benefitted me with weight loss and less pain. This ushers me into a ballroom of blessing, where I may celebrate progress. I may never tap dance again, (which is fine–because I never did before.) But I am finding it easier to do everything in my life than I did sixty-nine days ago. I am sleeping better, I am thinking better, I am creating better, I even have a better disposition. I am landing exactly where I need to be: in reality.

For after all, an optimist is someone who just hasn’t yet tried out his or her ideas. And a pessimist is someone who has tried out his or her ideas, but is unwilling to evolve them. I am a realist. I do not have functioning knees. I have remarkably strong thighs, calves and feet. Three-quarters of my walking mechanism are intact and ready to pick up some of the load. Amazing. But the reality is that right now, I am able to get around much more fluidly by occasionally perching myself in a wheel chair to get from Point A to Point B so that I can do Activity C.

I learned a long time ago that life is not a marathon–it is a sprint. I am prepared for the sprint. Please don’t sign me up for 26.2 miles.

After sixty-eight days, my sweet friends:

  • I have learned to define a miracle. It is called life.
  • I understand responsibility. Do what you can and don’t complain about the rest.
  • I celebrate progress: feeling better certainly does seem to be an answer to prayer.
  • And I stay real. I am neither a pessimist or an optimist, but rather, find great joy in what is afforded me by the privilege of still breathing.

Just an update from the front lines of my life. No bullets are flying … I’ve just dug into the trenches for the siege.

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Step Into It … November 25, 2012


He was five foot ten inches tall and weighed two hundred and twenty pounds. He was on my team–a good friend, and his name was Scott.

I used to love practice with him. He was so much fun to tackle. It was like chasing a bowling ball down the alley and trying to wrestle it into the gutter before it knocked down the pins.

One day during scrimmage, he was having great success against our defense. On one play, while running through the line, I caught him at just the right angle and solidly knocked him to the ground. I was so proud. Rising to my feet, I realized that my coach was standing over me. He grabbed me by the arm, took me back to the original line, pointed to a place on the ground and said, “That’s where you SHOULD have gotten him. You should have stepped into it two yards earlier and kept him from making any progress at all.”

Being just a punky kid, I was aggravated with the criticism, especially considering the fact I had made such a magnificent tackle. It got in my craw.

So at the end of the practice, the coach gathered us all together and did his daily wrap-up of our efforts. At the end of his pep talk, he pointed at me and told all the fellows on the team, “You guys see Cring, there?  Cring is so good–he can be better.” Then he looked at everybody’s face. Some people smiled; some crinkled their brows in bewilderment. One or two laughed and about four clapped their hands.

Realizing that nobody understood what he meant, he explained. “When you haven’t got much, it isn’t worth the time to try to make more. But if you’ve got something to start with, then your greatest joy is knowing that you can make it even bigger.”

Of course, we were just a bunch of bratty kids and didn’t understand. But I still remember that day. Matter of fact, it came to my mind on Tuesday when I was trying to get out of my van and my knees hurt really bad. I was about ready to hatch a fresh batch of complaining. It crossed my mind that this whole business with my legs was a little unfair, considering that all I want to do with my life is share my little dab of talent and help out where I can. And then … I heard the words again.

“Cring, you are so good that you can be better.”

I realized that the only way God can say He loves me is to give me greater challenges so I have a chance to produce lasting possibilities. I was humbled. I recognized that even though we think our accomplishments are sufficient, each and every one of us CAN “step into it.”

And the greatest compliment God can give us is to trust that we won’t give up just because it gets a little harder.

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

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