Jesonian … October 16th, 2018

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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Jesus was right there with them and they still wanted to talk about Pontius Pilate.

Politics. It just makes fellows strange.

Obsessed with a candidate or a party, human beings try to make life fit around existing ideas and platforms. Here’s the problem–they don’t.

Every situation is different. Some human struggles demand a conservative approach–others, liberality.

REPENT OF POLITICS

Jesus warned them.

When they asked him about Pontius Pilate, he said, “You need to repent, or you’re going to perish.”

Here’s the meaning: repent of politics or you will perish along with your failing politician.

He also said “you can’t serve God and Mammon.”

What is Mammon? It is the misuse, misunderstanding and mistreatment of money. There we are–right back to politics.

The issue is not whether the Republicans are right or the Republicans are wrong.

The issue is also not whether the Democrats are in the catbird seat or if they’re fallen doves.

The issue is that the Spirit of God demands that we be led in the direction that will benefit other human beings.

It cannot be decided politically and too many Christians have turned their faith over to politics and their hearts over to their favorite candidate.

JESUS’ CAMPAIGN SLOGAN

For Jesus’ campaign slogan is simple: “By this people will know who we are–that we have love one for another.”

Politics is a blood sport. Jesus has already shed all the blood needed.

Politics allows for lying. Jesus said “the truth will make you free.”

Politics favors its own. Jesus said “when you only love them who love you, you’re no better than the heathen.”

Politics wants to bolster its constituency. Jesus wants us to find the “least of these” and relate to them.

DO NICE GUYS FINISH LAST?

The other day on television I heard a noted politician say, “Nice guys finish last.”

Let’s look at some people who finished last:

  • Julius Caesar
  • Attila the Hun
  • Napoleon Bonaparte
  • Adolph Hitler
  • Idi Amin

Not a nice guy amongst them.

Nice guys just have to wait until the Earth is available for them to inherit–like allowing your landlord to wash and paint your condo before you move in.

Repent of politics or you will perish with your politicians.

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Sit Down Comedy … August 31st, 2018

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Stupid Is as Stupid Is

One of my favorite movies of all time is Forrest Gump, featuring inspired acting by Tom Hanks, who portrays a mentally challenged man from Alabama, who ends up taking his limited abilities and travels the world, reaching thousands of people.

Famous line: “Stupid is as stupid does.”

Although I find that to be insightful, I have to tell you that stupid is as stupid is.

Because every once in a while we all do stupid things but it doesn’t make us stupid.

One of the nastiest outgrowths of the social meanness that now occupies our country is the notion that some people are “just stupid.”

Once you convince those around you that some other group is full of “stupid people,” it’s not only simple to ignore them, but becomes much easier to mistreat them.

We have to learn the difference between stupid things and stupid people.

Well, let me use the video below to help make my point.

With hat in hand and my purse in possession, I launch out into my day, not becoming a stupid person because I did some stupid things, but instead, grateful that grace often covers a multitude of errors, if we keep our hearts humble.

There are two things that are not true about anyone in the human race:

No one is truly a genius, and no one is actually stupid.

 

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Ask Jonathots … December 8th, 2016

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What do you think about the idea that people get depressed during the holidays? Do you believe in “Blue Christmas?”

The diagnosis of depression is applied to everything from copouts to extreme physiological disorders. It is a shame that such a legitimate concern is rendered questionable by people who simply want to feel sorry for themselves.

So when we talk about depression, we’re referring to three different regions of human behavior:

  1. Fear of the afar
  2. Fear of our surroundings
  3. Fear borne from a chemical imbalance within

So when dear hearts come to us and say they’re in no mood to celebrate Christmas because it leaves them sad, it is important that we listen to them and decide if they’re expressing some apprehension about the world around them, some feeling of a lack of appreciation by those they interact with, or whether the recent concern about the holidays is aggravating what seems to be an ongoing thread in their lives.

Those who are involved in conspiracy theories or worry about what’s going on in our world can often be comforted with good cheer, a sense of well-being and the knowledge that someone cares for them.

Others who are disappointed by their surroundings or who have been subjected to mistreatment are often healed right before our eyes by a spirit of gentleness and kindness.

And those who have physiological roots for their depression need our encouragement to see a doctor so they can feel better.

So during this holiday season, when you run across people who are expressing misgivings, start with some good cheer and give them a listening ear, and see if that doesn’t lift their spirits.

If it does, you are like the angels on high, who declared “peace on Earth, good will toward men.”

But if your attempts at healing still leave them feeling empty, you might use your holiday joy to encourage them to seek an answer and find out the source of their depression within.

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Ask Jonathots… September 8th, 2016

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I had to do a short talk in speech class and wanted to chat about my church experience, but I felt I had to offer a disclaimer about Christianity: “I’m a Christian, but I don’t hate you.” I would love to stop having to do that. How?

Every single week, Americans go and spend money at Wal-Mart, even though it is pretty well known that their products are manufactured through cheap labor, often with the mistreatment of the employees. Should we stop shopping at Wal-Mart because the company has chosen practices that disregard the workers in other countries?

You can feel free to do so, but Wal-Mart is not going to be affected by your decision.

Or you can come to the conclusion that the only responsibility you have is to make sure that your life, your aspirations and your interactions with other human beings are free of intimidation and unfairness.

You’re not responsible for Wal-Mart.

You are responsible for you.

It’s very important that each believer in the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth understand that the religious system that represents him is guilty of excess, greed, indifference and at times the subjugation of the poor. The system has drug its feet on issues of human rights and racial and gender equality.

Yet to stop attending a church, turning it over to the indifferent, is failing to capture an opportunity to quietly change the atmosphere.

If enough people show up at the religious system and refuse to merely act in ritual and repetition, then eventually, because the religious system likes to collect offerings, it will have to change in order to accommodate the new spirit.

For instance, I only buy groceries at Wal-Mart. Why? Because most of the products that come into the grocery department are not grown in sweat shops. It is a small consideration but still a difference.

And I don’t refuse to go to the church because it is filled with hypocrisy and vanity, but instead, I go to encourage my brothers and sisters and fellow-humans to be of good cheer, lighten their load and give a damn.

So I suppose if I were standing in front of your speech class, I would say:

“I’m a follower of Jesus. He thinks we should love our neighbor as ourselves. Jesus was fine until the committee showed up–just like the United States was a great idea until politics corrupted it. But I neither give up on Jesus nor the United States just because those who scream the loudest are ignorant. I am a follower of Jesus. I don’t make a very good Christian, because I’m just not religious.”

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Three Freaks… August 29, 2013

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bearded ladySlipping out of the encampment of the sleeping carnival crew, three freaks make their way down the hill, into the unsuspecting village of the townsfolk beneath.

They mean no good.

They are mischievous, self-motivated, bizarre and willing to do whatever is necessary to usurp their opinions, feelings and antics.

The same “attack of the freaks” is being paralleled in America.

We have released three freaks onto our families and children under the guise of pseudo-intellectualism and open-mindedness–or maybe because we want to come across as always being in the flow.

I don’t know about the motivation. But the three freaks are wreaking havoc on the spirit that has made America great.

1. Self-esteem. You can tell people who lack ability, motivation and talent that they are good, but you can never make them better by your words. Confidence is awarded to those who cross the finish line.

2. Getting even. Although we insist we are a Christian nation, we tout the Middle-eastern philosophy of “an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth“–a belief system, by the way, which has proven to produce nothing but wars. Here is a piece of gold: the best way to overcome mistreatment is to leave it behind and refuse to take revenge.

3. Stressed out. Somehow or another, the criterion for being an adult is having a countenance wracked with worry and fear. History disagrees. All the great men and women of the past learned very quickly that stress is where success begins. Without a need, there is no creativity.

These three freaks who have escaped from the “carnival of errors” will continue to plague us with their pranks until we take them back to where they belong and view them from either afar or when we’re in a mood to think about foolishness.

Let me give you three freak-killers:

1. Work for joy and self-satisfaction, not praise.

2. Forgiveness heals the mess.

3. No blessing without testing.

You put those three concepts to work and see if your self-esteem doesn’t naturally grow, your sense of justice and fairness is not appeased and your productivity does not tolerate a few minutes of feeling crunched.

Beware the freaks. They do not mean you any good whatsoever. They are trying to bring the philosophy of the carnival to the simplicity of life.

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