G-Poppers … June 16th, 2017

 

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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G-Pop welcomes all his children to the jungle called “today.”

It is possible to negotiate the experience as long as you avoid over-optimism or a nasty streak of pessimism.

First and foremost, G-Pop wants his children to know that coming into the jungle anticipating “good, better and best” is a futile, if not cruel, perspective. Human being s are not geared for such an agenda. Your friends will crumple if you place this regimen upon them.

What you have in the jungle is 1) the reluctant 2) the mediocre and 3) the available. Just realize this. It is the key to survival, which allows for success.

Reluctant people have one message: “leave me alone.” To pursue any further with a reluctant person will ignite their inner rage instead of awakening their potential. They will need to see much before they do anything.

On the other hand, the mediocre communicate clearly, “Why should I change?” They can explain why others need to alter their course and repent, but they feel deeply that they have done as much as they possibly can without sucking on their last straw of sanity.

Then you’ll come upon a clearing and meet the available. Those are the human beings who realize, “We need something.”It doesn’t mean they’re highly motivated to be productive, but they will admit that something needs to happen, or the same mediocre reluctance will render all of us vulnerable to the creatures of prey who devour the weak.

So what is your job? Are you called to turn a reluctant person into an eager one? God forbid. When you run across someone who’s reluctant, just encourage them to keep rummaging. If you see anything of quality, praise it.

Likewise, when you interface with the mediocre, G-Pop wants his children to leave them with something to think about–that good, old-fashioned food for thought with a lot of relish and mustard. Just tell them what you’re considering, and admit that you don’t have the answers, but you’re curious. Mediocre sometimes gets stirred, and in the process, can turn into a bubbling stew.

And of course, when you stumble upon those who are available, urge them to wonder. For instance:

  • How much could a little change accomplish?
  • How about if we just painted the fence?
  • What if we just purchased a welcome mat for the front door of the house?
  • What power does a little creativity bring, which might stimulate the passion to do more?

G-Pop must warn his children that the search for good, better and best is only suited for when we walk among the angels.

Enter the jungle called “today” knowing how to deal with the reluctant, the mediocre and the available.

 

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Ask Jonathots… August 25th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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I want my kids to have a spiritual upbringing but I don’t feel comfortable with a lot of the churches available to us. How do I ensure that I am instilling spirituality in their lives?

Your question is really in two parts.

First, what should I do about the church, and second, how do I instill spirituality in my kids?

Let me start with the second question. There are three steps to true spirituality:

1. What do I truly believe?

I will tell you something shocking. The less you believe in, the better the chance will be that you will follow it.

This is why, in the Good Book, the entire sixty-six units boil down to a single phrase: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”

The truth is, when you love your neighbor as yourself, you’re already putting into practice at least fifty principles. But if you focus on loving your neighbor as yourself, you will be honoring a thousand ideas.

2. How does what I believe affect me?

The absence of an abundant life is the presence of a crappy belief system. It was Jesus who said that fruit would be borne in our lives through what we believe. If you are miserable, irritable, grouchy, complaining, bigoted, self-centered, short-sighted and selfish, you probably need to go shopping for a new belief.

3. How does my belief affect others?

Our belief was never intended to be a preachy condemnation of the lifestyle of our brother or sister. It is a light that shines in place, available for those who wish to emerge from their darkness.

In other words, if you’re teaching your children to love their neighbors as themselves, use their beliefs to progress them emotionally, spiritually, mentally and physically, and allot mercy and tolerance to others while affording a helping hand, then you have spirituality.

Now, when it comes to the church, the spiritual representation of that idea has been lost in the implementation of the organization. But here’s the truth of the matter: if you have a good heart, a willing spirit, an open mind and an active desire, you can go into any church and affect the theology simply by being a worker instead of a critic.

There is no way that people with true spiritual insight can be ignored in a religious system that stumbles over its own clumsy rules.

So once you get your children in an attitude of understanding what true spirituality is, then go to church and let your light shine–because that beam of confidence will soon put you in a position to change the mediocre surroundings.

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Jonathan’s Latest Book Release!

PoHymn: A Rustling in the Stagnant

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Getting in Character … July 27th, 2015

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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Siskell and Ebert

From Act II, Scene VII of As You Like It, Shakespeare asserts that “all the world is a stage and all the men and women, merely players.”

A good performance does not guarantee a good response.

Learning this may be the secret to both contentment and success.

Somewhere along the line, we have acquired the idea that good things eventually receive acclaim. Nothing could be further from the truth.

There are factors at work in the marketplace of humanity that are often geared to eliminate competition by thrusting good ideas, good sensations and even good performances to the rear. Otherwise, mediocrity would have no chance of surviving–and we all know that the mediocre is often hoisted on the shoulders of the masses and proclaimed to be excellent.

So the first thing we must do is establish a standard for ourselves that is higher than present expectation.

There’s a simple reason for this:

If we do receive rave reviews, then we know that it was brought about by concerted effort rather than luck. And if we don’t, we can have confidence that any persecution or retribution that comes our way is more than likely being spawned from some pit of prejudice or jackal of jealousy.

So if we’re not going to always receive what we’re due for our performance, what is the purpose of trying to excel, or stepping out on the stage of life to display our hearts in the first place?

Every real performance which is practiced and perfected affords us four delightful conclusions:

1. We can stop lying.

That in itself should be enough to encourage us toward developing the glorious rendition of our part.

2. Every good performance exposes our insecurities.

Isn’t it fascinating that rehearsal always brings the faults to the forefront, and then we can decide whether we are secure enough to improve them?

3. Performance eliminates conceit.

There is no need to be conceited about something that is obviously good. Conceit is generally birthed in a person who privately fears that what he or she has to share is insufficient. So they try to cover it up with pomp and circumstance.

4. And finally, the pursuit of a great performance, whether regaled with honors or not, gives us a huge opportunity to overcome our fears:

  • Fear of failing
  • Fear of obscurity
  • Fear of being critiqued
  • And fear of suffering injustice while knowing deep in our hearts that we’re doing something of great quality

The truth of the matter is, great does not always rate. It doesn’t come with a guaranteed award.

But it does reward us with a true sense of confidence… that we have stepped out and found our best.

 

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Three Ways to Deal With Terrorism…February 12, 2015

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Another “them against us” scenario.

Our leaders in Washington, D.C. have us all convinced that “them”– extremists in the Middle East–are out to get “us”–peace-loving Americans.

Even though we should have learned through our history books that the “them against us” mindset only leads to stress and the promotion of bigotry, we perpetuate it because we do not want to be terrorized.

I am convinced that the only way to avoid any evil in life is to make sure that you have not embraced it. The best way for us to fight terrorism in the Middle East is to remove the terror from our own lives and use success and prosperity as our best revenge.

How can you deal with terrorism?

1. Find terror in your own heart and disarm it.

The most obvious plague that terrorizes us as human beings is complaining. Once we allow griping to come into our lives, we are unsettled, unprepared and basically unaware of how we can resolve our situations. After all, why make a plan if you can simply complain about the circumstances that warrant it?

Why do these extremists in the Middle East murder and create mayhem? Because they follow a religious approach that allows them to complain about their lives, leaving them unwilling to accept the diversity of others.

2. Find terror in your family and address it.

Once you’ve taken the time to get rid of complaining, then you should turn to your own household and find out where terror is lurking. I am convinced this is mediocrity. Once we start settling for second-best, or even third-runner-up, we build up a series of unresolved problems which eventually slap us in the head.

If your son’s job is to take out the garbage, stop begging and complaining about it. Shut off all food and media–and pretty soon the garbage will be taken out. Mediocre breeds more mediocre, which eventually births disaster.

3. Find terror in your community and question it.

I’ll tell you what’s terrorizing American society today: gossip.

Our preoccupation for judging other people’s lives has led to bullying, crime, judgment and alienation. If you have an opinion on somebody else and you’re not willing to share it with him or her, it’s gossip. Even if you say you’re only sharing it because you want to ask for prayer, it’s gossip–and gossip is a greater terrorist threat to this country than any Middle Eastern suicide bomber.

If you will deal with the terrorism that exists in your own surroundings, you will send this message to those twisted souls who are determined to hurt other people:

  • We are not going to complain
  • We are not going to settle for the mediocre
  • And by the grace of God, we refuse to batter one another with gossip.

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Jesonian: Baby Talk… December 21, 2014

  Jonathots Daily Blog

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Goo-goo.

Da-da.

Ma-ma.

La-la.

Baby talk.

Jesus was a baby.

He didn’t come out of Mary’s womb espousing great parables with immaculate diction. Being human and very tiny in his understanding, he pointed to things and tried to express his inner feelings.

So “goo-goo” was goodness.

“Da-da” was Father God.

“Ma-ma” was Mother Earth.

And “la-la” was love your neighbor.

The magic of the Christmas season is that Jesus was a baby, pooping his pants, urping up mother’s milk and using baby talk.

I am one believer who feels we would be better off if the entire gospel of life was expressed in baby talk, so that we all could become children and therefore inherit the Kingdom of God.

So on this day, I say to you: “Goo-goo,” which means that goodness is achieved when we confront the mediocre before it slides into the pits of evil.

I mouth to you: “Da-da.” God is my Father, and in that position, He is not my Creator, but rather, my parent.

With a bit of drool around the corners of my mouth, I say: “Ma-ma.” Learn Mother Earth. Discern the signs of your times. The Earth is the Lord’s so respect it. Don’t be ignorant of what is current.

And finally, “La-la.” We should love our neighbor as ourselves. Without this, we become dangerously self-involved, precariously at the mercy of others who possess too much self-love and ignore us in our time of need.

Baby talk.

For after all, out of the mouth of a Babe we received great words of wisdom. 

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Populie: It Doesn’t Affect Us… March 5, 2014

Jonathots Daily Blog  

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onion slicesAlthough I felt silly, I was a little giddy over the possibility of having a thick slice of raw onion on top of my turkey burger. I had not done that for years. I don’t know why–it isn’t like I’ve been indigent and unable to purchase such a delicacy from the store. But there it was–a huge, yellow onion sitting in front of me, which I sliced and put on top of my turkey burger and began to devour it–perhaps better stated, ravage.

About seven bites in, I noticed that the treat was not treating me very well in the stomach region. But I denied it. After all, sometimes our bellies complain and then later purr with contentment. But hallelujah, praise the Lord and pass the ammunition, about three hours later I was in the middle of one of the worst cases of indigestion I’ve ever had–so much so that I wondered if the Grim Reaper was coming with my own personal rendition of the common heart attack.

Of course, it wasn’t. It was just a foolish, older chap trying to eat like he did when he was fifteen. I was convinced that the raw onion would not affect me.

It is a common POPULIE.

We watch, peruse, consider, indulge in and immerse ourselves in activities and entertainment that are filled with sexual depravity, violence, decapitation and the general mockery of the beauty of humanity–and we proudly say that because we have crossed the age of eighteen and are now adults, we can view without absorbing.

The problem is that even though this is a popular contention, it is a lie. It is a populie.

Just as my stomach was unable to accept the bitter acidity of that raw onion without revolting, our entire beings suffer from the collision of anti-human and unfeeling experiences which rattle us instead of relating to us.

The Good Book says that “the light of the body is the eye. If the eye is evil the whole body is full of darkness.”

I know this isn’t popular, but the truth of the matter is, since we are heart creatures, everything touches our emotions first.

From our emotions, the experience invades our spirit. Now, here’s the tricky part. The spirit of man has been instructed to reject things that are not edifying. So if the spirit is invaded with death and mayhem, it closes the door so that we may stay pure of heart. The information, therefore, goes straight to the brain.

These kinds of depraved images, when they arrive in the brain, reinforce our tendencies instead of challenging us to become renewed. The conclusion? A brain which is not renewed passes ideas on to the body for mediocre response instead of the pursuit of excellence.

Now–my mediocre response and your mediocre response are two different things. For instance, watching the violent rape of a woman in a movie may make me lethargic, uncaring and maybe a bit disrespectful to females. But if had a brain which was turned toward the perverse in the first place, the mediocre response could be domestic violence, infidelity or even my own rendition of what I just saw.

There will be divergent results. But we do know this–the finished product of emotions that are invaded by sinister images is a brain that reinforces its own foolish prejudices, ending up with mediocrity.

Mediocrity can be anything from disobeying your parents to serial killing.

What we see does affect us. If you don’t care and you think your personal mediocre is sufficient for your existence, then don’t seek enlightenment. But if you want your emotions to offer edification to your spirit, which renews your mind so that your body will relish excellence, then you should be a bit more careful in your choices.

Populie: it doesn’t affect us.

Why in the hell would we want to watch anything that doesn’t affect us?

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Click for details on the SpirTed 2014 presentation

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A Spring in My Step … January 12, 2014

Jonathots Daily Blog

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Cypress Trails

Two words. Just a pair of words, which if applied well, makes life so much easier, happier and smoother.

Don’t complain.

“Easier said than done!” squalls the cynic from the back of the room.

Actually when it comes to complaining, the solution for this malady is easier done than said. For no single action has created more sour pusses, disgruntled souls and unwilling participants than complaining. It deteriorates every situation down to a sad conclusion, where you not only are failing to do what you want, but you’re miserable stuck doing what you’re doing. doctor tongue depressor

I would suggest we all become a doctor–an eye, ear, nose and throat specialist:

Eye: stop rolling your eyes and squinting every time something comes along that looks like it’s a little different from your normal purview, and instead, be flattered that you get to try something in a fresh way and maybe for a noble reason.

Ear: stop listening to negative sayers, who have lost all hope in anything excellent being achieved and settled in to pursue the mediocre, strongly suggesting that you join them.

Nose: get your nose out of the air and stop following the ridiculous notion that you are better than anybody else or that your pedigree gives you a pass on the kitchen duty often required in the household of humanity.

Throat: if out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks, you might want to build a toll booth in your throat to approve all words passing northward which have an attitude to drag down everybody in the room, southward.

And by the way, you could work on the abundance in your heart. If you change it to good cheer and hope, your words will follow.

Complaining is the exhausting, unnecessary trip around the block, only to end up back where you started, more frustrated.

As I spend the day in Spring, Texas, at Cypress Trails United Methodist Church, I will suggest that they gain the ability to be doctors of the eye, ear, nose and throat.

It will give you a clean bill of health, free of complaining. And once you cease to have anything to fuss about, your load will be lightened and your steps will be more joyful … in Spring, Texas.

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

Click for details on the SpirTed 2014 presentation

Click for details on the SpirTed 2014 presentation

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

click to hear music from Spirited 2014

click to hear music from Spirited 2014

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