Jonathots … January 29th, 2019

 


Jonathots Daily Blog

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handbook for touching

It’s touching.

I’m touched.

Touch me.

From the minute we plop out of the womb, we scream—not for food, not sight, or to hear comforting words—and not to smell chocolate chip cookies.

We scream for connection.

Goddamn it—put me back against my mother’s skin. Let me feel some touch.

Then society, our educational system, religious training and our entertainment industry attempt to make us overly dependent on what we merely see and hear.

Touch is removed except for obvious situations, when we require intimacy.

We are told that touch is dangerous. You can contract diseases. You can over-commit your emotions.

Therefore, we reserve touch and withhold it. Matter of fact, when we even hear the word touch, we associate it with sexuality instead of humanity.

Some ideas persist:

Shaking hands, for instance. But we’re changing that to a fast fist-bump.

Holding hands. Isn’t a high-five enough?

A pat on the back. “Come on! You know I support you.”

There’s a national pastime to make things that draw us closer together seem unnatural. As a result, we cloister into smaller and smaller units, only allowing for fellowship in the catacombs of our own understanding.

I see you. I see what you’re doing. I want to let you know I appreciate it. I touch you.

I hear you. I love the sound. It makes me what to touch you.

I smell your human odor—your fragrance. Yes, I wouldn’t mind being close.

And certainly, I taste you. We are intimate. It makes me yearn to caress you.

It is impossible to foster human progress without touch.

Even as we argue about people coming to our country from other nations, is it not possible for us to honor those who emigrate while still being careful about their immigration? Can’t we be touched by their journey, and still ask them to stand in line and fill out an application? Why must we portray them as evil, nasty, rotten and devious?

When you remove touch, you hamper the hands, and when the hands retreat, the ability to assist evaporates.

Being touched is not a feminine thing, nor is it a masculine no-no. It is the only way that we’re sure we’re alive…and it means something.

 

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Jonathots … January 22nd, 2019

 


Jonathots Daily Blog

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handbook for touching

Thinking that something which is not real is going to happen is called crazy.

Believing that something that is not real is going to happen is called faith.

Faith and crazy have a lot in common.

This is why, over the centuries, many who thought they were moving in faith ended up looking crazy—and there were those deemed crazy who historically are proclaimed people of faith.

The difference between faith and crazy is what energizes them.

Crazy is energized by fear—fear of rejection, fear of the future, fear of other human beings, or fear of responsibility.

Faith works by love—an appreciation for opportunity, a deep respect for other humans, and a desire to take what is given and work with it.

So how do I know I have the hands of faith instead of the mitts of crazy?

It’s the energy that comes off me, which will tell you whether I’m being controlled by fear or motivated by love.

There’s a story in the Good Book which says a woman touched the hem of Jesus’ garment and was healed because “virtue came forth from him.” There was so much energy of love, hope and faith that it literally radiated from him into her body.

Sounds a little weird, doesn’t it? But we actually refer to it all the time:

  • “I pick up a good vibe from you.”
  • “You have a great aura.”
  • “When you’re in the room, I feel like everything is possible.”
  • “You make things pleasant.”
  • “You make things work.”
  • “You help me believe.”

The power of touch includes the ability to generate the energy of love, which is able to be transferred from one person to another.

Yes—we can infuse our authority and power into another human being.

Yes—faith and love can be passed along, just as we know that craziness and fear can ricochet through mob, turning them into killers.

I’m on a journey to make sure that my faith is not crazy by confirming every day that it is fed by love instead of fear.

 

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3 Things … November 15th, 2018

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powerful things

That Make You Powerful Even Though You Choose to Be Humble

1. People underestimate your potential, opening the door to great surprise

 

2. You don’t have to fight and struggle. The opportunity will come.

 

3. You won’t be accused of cheating.


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Salient…August 6th, 2018

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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There are matters that are too important to ignore or leave to chance. These are salient moments.

The stall.

The pause.

The stammer.

Tentative moments that rob us of the opportunity to see a goal achieved–a dream accomplished.

We have foolishly portrayed inaction as humility.

The stall is when there’s something to be.

Fear sets in. How will I be perceived? Will I be left out there all alone? Maybe I should wait.

The pause is when there’s something to do.

Opportunity knocks but never promises to wait around until we get our robe on, to answer the door. That extra few moments of carefulness often costs us the great blessing of participating.

The stammer.

Yes, there are moments in life when there’s something to say.

It needs to be uttered. It should be shouted from the housetops, but at least whispered in the ear.

But instead of being, doing and saying, the human race trembles with a stall, a pause and a stammer.

This might not even be a problem–except each of us expects more out of life than we’re willing to give. As a result, three nasty spirits inhabit the human heart:

1. “I feel cheated.”

2. “I’m angry.”

3. “No one understands.”

From that defeated position, we attempt to wage a campaign for our common good. It is doomed.

And then, when we realize that the little we have is insufficient, we suddenly discover that even our tiny portion is taken away.

Most people don’t understand life because they only believe in either God or science. But there is a science to God, and there is a Godliness in science. This balance tells us that when you remove the motivation and energy from a creature, it recluses and dies.

Beware the stall, the pause and the stammer. They will make you feel cheated, angry and misunderstood.

So here is your salient moment:

When there is something to be, step into it.

When there is something to do, perform to the best of your ability.

And when there’s something to say, speak up.

 

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G-Poppers … September 1st, 2017

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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Jon close up

A quick point from G-Pop.

If it is your idea to share your heart, it’s called vulnerable. If somebody else demands you share your heart, it’s called weak.

Human beings need the ability to make their own choice. When you remove this, you tinker with the soul. No human being has the right to tinker with the soul of another.

Yet rather than screaming about choice, it would be a good idea to learn how choice is acquired.

It’s really quite simple:

If you need to be wanted, you always come across as weak. On the other hand, if you need to be respected, you will generally be considered mean.

So at all costs, we must refrain from the need to be wanted–that fussy part of us that tries to pretend we don’t care what people think while simultaneously being addicted to the drug of public opinion. Because the danger is to rebound and try to become tough, demanding that people respect us–and when they don’t, plotting a foolish revenge.

This situation is not different in China as compared to Argentina. The people in the British Isles don’t have different criterion than those in Nigeria. All of us function in the same scenario. In other words, we rise and thrive by avoiding the feelings of needing to be wanted or needing to be respected.

Being wanted and respected is impossible until it is determined that you are valuable. So crawl into your own soul and make pearls–accumulating worth.

Make yourself interesting. Make yourself predictable in a good way. In other words, when the chips are down, you can be counted on.

There you are. If you are going to complain about the system, you’ll never be able to work with it. So how do we become valuable?

1. Stop seeking praise and seek opportunity.

2. Be willing to do important things on your own when others have given up.

3. Don’t criticize people for failing to have the same determination that you do.

4. Do the good deed and don’t hang around for the party.

5. Make sure that when you fail, you make it clear to those around you that you’re going to correct it or improve it.

6. Acknowledge the value in others.

G-Pop wants his children to know that they should not need to be wanted or need to be respected.

The power lies in becoming valuable to those around you–and then they will want you and respect you.

 

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PoHymn: A Rustling in the Stagnant … February 22nd, 2017

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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pohymn-kick

Practicing My Kick

I can still do something

After failure has given me astart

My gifts may be fewer

Or may be a bit tired

Yet they remain

Faithfully the same

I cannot judge myself

By the value adhered to me

I must simply rest and consider

How blessed I continue to be

For the bubbling in my soul

Is still a volcano of power

Ready to erupt and display

Many wonders in this hour

For if I am too confident

I abandon the chance to learn

Yet if I am afraid

An opportunity I will burn

Thank you, thanks and appreciation

Grant me love for every nation

Just give me a door and watch me sell

I’ll ask and seek and knock so well

A little slower but still not sick

Feeling alive, practicing my kick

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Good News and Better News… December 26th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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good-news-christmas-morning

 

My Christmas morning:

  • Four tiny little ones
  • One twelve-year-old
  • A teenager
  • Eighteen adults
  • And six dogs marauding about, sniffing at presents.

It was all held in a lovely, but somewhat square-footage-impaired house in East Nashville.

Although most people consider Christmas to be a holiday season which they either enjoy or complain about trying to get through, I contend that Christmas is a microcosm of life as it should be. It’s a collision of giving and receiving, organizing and finding yourself surprised by a slip-up, and having a crunch of humanity around you which requires you to be open-minded and willing to adapt.

For instance, in the course of our morning, well over a hundred presents were opened.

Also, one of the young men decided to use it as an occasion to propose marriage to his girlfriend–an amazing precedent.

And there were moments of silliness followed by junctures of tenderness, concluding with decisions to stay energetic enough to survive the gauntlet.

The adults made themselves flexible to appreciate toys opened by Santa believers and the subtleties of certain gifts which needed to be explained because they only had significance to the recipient.

Then, in the midst of the festivities and the brunch following, we discovered that one of the guests just lost his grandma. She had passed away in her sleep.

Quiet–and amazing it was how quickly it settled on the room, even among the children. A time to feel and consider the magnitude of such a departure.

Tears.

Gentleness.

Allowing ourselves to transition from one emotion to another without trauma or drama, to return to eating and enjoying one another as life insisted on pushing forward. I heard one person declare the day a “miracle,” but actually, it’s the way our lives are meant to be lived: in abundance.

Abundant opportunities

Abundant problems

Abundant relationships

Abundant attempts

Abundant failures

Abundant successes

And abundant gratitude

The good news is that Christmas is a time for abundance.

The better news is that the baby in the manger came to give us life, and it more abundantly.

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