Ask Jonathots … May 5th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(2925)

ask jonathots bigger

What causes some siblings to grow up to be friends and others not? I’m forty and I’m not close to my sister at all. I have two teenage daughters, and I’m wondering what I could do to help them grow up to be friends. Your thoughts?

Perhaps one of the more egregious errors in our culture is the notion that the nuclear family is meant to remain intact.

It causes more stress, misgivings, grudges, insecurity, mishap and even murder than any other predicament facing our species.

If I were a coal miner in West Virginia, was unfortunately involved in a cave-in and spent nine days under the earth with eight other people, we would become very close. Matter of fact, we would share dreams, aspirations, prayers and any food and water available to sustain one another.

Yet to think that after I left that cave of impending death I should continue those relationships with my fellow-prisoners outside the mishap would be ridiculous, forced and disappointing.

For a season we share common goals and aspirations with our family. That experience can range from survival to ecstasy.

But humans are meant to come out of this cocoon and bloom in our individual lives, to start our own families, sustaining our species with new possibilities.

Some sisters have memories of the time when they grew up in the same house, but their journey takes them in completely different directions, with new friends, causing the old encounters to bring fond memories but not needful continuation.

Other sisters stay in the same communities, and it’s like their new families are extensions of the older rendition.

One thing is certain–it evolves naturally and cannot be manipulated through false emotion or guilt.

We must understand that for some people, the memory of their birthing family is pleasant but irrelevant, pleasant but valuable, pleasant but in the past.

For others such recollections are unpleasant and degrading, unpleasant and unnecessary, and unpleasant and harmful.

It is always better to look at the family of our youth as the ship that brought us to the New World. Sometimes that ship can sit out in the harbor of our environment as a memory of great times. And sometimes the ship is so full of holes that it needs to be sunk.

You can’t help people to be friends. Friendship is always based upon mutual concerns.

But what you can do is maintain the better parts of every experience as you launch out into newness of life.

Donate Button

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

 

Make Me … July 7, 2014

 

Jonathots Daily Blog

(2284)

Viewing violence makes me grouchy

Religious ritual makes me fussy

Politics makes me intolerant

Laziness makes me fat and cynical

Reading books makes me book-smart

Laughing, believe it or not, makes me sleep

Sleeping makes me pleasant

Pleasant makes me friendly

Friendly makes me friends

Friends make me confident

Confident makes me hopeful

Hopeful makes me creative

Creative makes …

Creativity

At the end of my sharing yesterday in Janesville, Wisconsin, a young fellow came to my table and gave me a picture he had drawn. His name was Garrhett.

He told me that he had created the image during my show, and his mother said he should give it to me.

I told him I would use it in one of my jonathots. He looked at me with great disbelief, as if to say, “Sure you will.”

So here you go, Garrhett. Here’s your picture, as promised.

And by the way, you made me do it.

drawing

 

Donate Button

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

Arizona morning

Click here to get info on the “Gospel According to Common Sense” Tour

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

Click here to listen to Spirited music

Click here to listen to Spirited music

 

 

The Gospel According to Common Sense (A Remake) … March 20, 2014

Jonathots Daily Blog  

(2181)

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I have a heart cluttered with emotion.

I possess a soul yearning to believe.

I am caretaker to a brain which can think, but prefers to react.

I live in a body filled with appetites and desires.

Sure looks like I’m a mess.

But it’s my mess.

“You break it, you own it.”

Remember that one?

So I need something to get these parts to work together.

Theater focuses on emotions.

The church, on the soul.

Education, on the brain

And the world, on the body.

I need more.

Common sense.

It isn’t so common–or we might stumble on it more often.

So here’s a clue to common sense–a passage, if you will:

I will clean my heart by being more honest about what I feel.

Pleasant and not so pleasant.

I will reawaken my soul by looking for God in people

Instead of begging the heavens.

I will think about good things more than bad.

It’s like a breath mint for the mind.

Then I will use my clean heart, loving soul and fresh brain to teach my body to exercise healthier appetites.

Finally, I will do the world a favor:

I won’t call them crazy, but I won’t go crazy with them.

Common sense.

When our common need with one another calls us to sit down and talk sense.

Donate Button

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

Click here to get info on the "Gospel According to Common Sense" Tour

Click here to get info on the “Gospel According to Common Sense” Tour

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

While I’m Looking … February 5, 2013

(1,782)

eyeballWhile I’m looking for a happy millionaire, a cool cat, a pleasant planner, a thoughtful thinker, a Christian Christian and a content God, I do believe it would be a good idea to pursue some of the things I’ve learned while trying to uncover these treasures.

For instance, I have discovered that the best way to be happy is to show up with your own batch of good cheer instead of assuming it will be provided upon your arrival.

The best way to be a cool cat? Be aware of the world around you, care about what people are saying–and only share when you know it’s going to edify and help someone.

Even though people exchange pleasantries all the time, I have learned that the best way to come across pleasant is to always lead with a smile–even if a frown is thrown back in your face.

And in this era of knowledge being pushed constantly, with tons of statistics backing up every point, I like to flush my brain out and become the thoughtful human being I need to be by living out a simple principle: whatsoever things are good, think on those things. There are people who may accuse me of having my head in the sand, but I think that’s preferable to tossing my mind in the gutter.

To honor the beauty of the word “Christian,” I have selected the following profile: I always imagine that Jesus has asked me to keep an eye on his house while he’s out of town. If my neighbor did that, I would be conscientious. If my neighbor asked me to watch his home, I would take care of it the way I know that HE takes care of it. And if my friend trusted me enough to watch over his abode, I would make sure that when he returns, it’s just the way he likes it. Jesus loved people, hated pretense and was not terribly interested in religious practice. He’s left us in charge of his roof and doorstep. We might want to respect his wishes.

And finally, while I’m looking for a content God, I am going to choose to believe that God most certainly must be more gracious, merciful and nicer than me. It amazes me that some people worship a divine being who is NOT as courteous and loving as they themselves. I do not know why I would want to give my devotion to a spirit which I would not want to spend ten minutes with, sharing a McDonald’s hamburger. Yes–most certainly God has to be better than me. Otherwise, I’m sorry–He doesn’t get to be God.

I figure these practices and initiatives are gonna keep me busy–and also, might prevent me from becoming cynical about my quest for finding these particular individuals. Because who knows? Maybe they don’t even exist. But if they don’t, my world does not become better by knowing that. So I will continue to look for…

  • a happy millionaire
  • a cool cat
  • a pleasant planner
  • a thoughtful thinker
  • a Christian Christian
  • and a content God.

After all, it’s not that painful to go around and investigate. Truth be told, I’m having the time of my life.

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

A Tiny Step–November 5, 2011

(1,321)

Packed up.

There’s no feeling quite like it and I wish you could all be there to experience the sensation. The program is done, folks are greeted, the equipment is loaded and you find yourself prepared to journey back to where you have selected to headquarter yourself while on tour. There’s a little chill in the air that’s able to reach your soul because you’ve allowed yourself to be open to other human beings.  It prompts a bit of giddiness.

It was Thursday night in Summerville, South Carolina, near Charleston, and I was about two hours from a good night’s rest. I got on the freeway and did what I always do. I set my cruise control at 65 miles per hour … because that was the speed limit. You would have thought I was rowing a boat in the middle of a muddy creek. Everyone passed me–and some of them even honked at me because I was presumptuously driving too slow for their taste.

At 65 miles an hour, it was going to take me two hours to get home. Driving 70 miles an hour, I would have gotten home in one hour and fifty minutes–ten minutes sooner.  Driving 75 miles an hour I would have gotten there twenty minutes earlier. This is a big deal to some folks, or at least it seems to be.

Also, it annoys me when I am driving along at 65 miles an hour and I have to suddenly slam on the brakes because the guy driving in front of me, going 75 or 80 miles an hour, suddenly notices there’s a police car ahead. So we go from the ridiculous to the sublime. Yes–he drops all the way from 80 to 50, sheepishly creeping by the police car and hoping that radar has not caught his errant behavior.  I pass him, continuing to drive 65 miles per hour–the big, fat tortoise that I am.

I don’t feel self-righteous about this issue. I just think we need some place to start–yes–to begin to have integrity as a bulwark for our character. We are constantly bombarded by examples of lying and cheating on television and in the movies–and especially on the scandal-ridden news programs which pepper our minds with negative images of our fellow-man. I think we’ve actually begun to believe that most lying is inevitable and some lying is even necessary.

Here’s what you have to do to drive 65 miles an hour home from Summerville, South Carolina, and not get frustrated or be tempted to speed:

1. Make a plan. The reason most people feel the necessity to break the law and drive too fast is that they’ve convinced themselves that they’re way too busy to spend time in a car, scooting along to their destination. The art of planning is the essence of escaping worry and frustration. Just being able to leave ten minutes earlier saves you from having to slow up in front of policemen or eventually get that ticket when they inevitably catch you. Planning has become a negative in our country, associated with anal behavior, female tendencies or even poor mental health due to fussiness over meticulous detail. And boy, does it show up! We have people who can’t keep their word on deadlines, government in gridlock and organizations that repeat the same activities over and over again until people totally lose interest. Yes, I had to plan my trip to Summerville AND back. Yes, I went into much detail. Yes, I prepared myself physically for the excursion. And yes:

2. I surrounded myself with pleasantness. The reason most of us are in such a hurry is that we’re trying to get away from unpleasant activities we have failed to transform into reasonable joys. I am the great benefactor of sitting in a van and traveling with two delightful women who converse with me and I with them instead of staring out the windows, acting like we’re looking for icebergs on the Titanic. Because folks don’t plan well, they miss the opportunity for great pleasantries with one another. Matter of fact, you can do some of that planning for the next day while riding in your car, going the speed limit.  How about a book on CD? I have a couple if you’re interested.  How about music of your choice instead of the radio? Once again, I have some of those also. How about a cup of coffee and a really tasty, cheap hot dog from your local convenience store?  (Everyone knows calories consumed in a car in the pursuit of a journey don’t count on your waistline.  At least, I heardthat’s what I’ve heard …) By simply driving the speed limit–a small step–you will learn to be a better planner and surround yourself with desirable possibilities, causing you to use a great human attribute:

3. Patience. Patience is not gripping the steering wheel like it’s a life preserver in an ocean storm, but rather, relaxing in your planning and pleasant environment, knowing that what’s up ahead isn’t any better than what you presently have. Jesus said, “In your patience you possess your souls.” A powerful thought. Is it possible that this entire human journey is going to boil down to God evaluating how willing we were to drive the speed limit, patiently evolving our plan, in a pleasant mood? For the sake of many of my dear friends, I hope not.

Take a small step.  Take one day of your life and drive the speed limit. Take a few minutes ahead of that to plan your day so it’s feasible. And then reward yourself by surrounding yourself with really neat things, so you can happily enjoy yourself when others drive by and honk at you.

We need to take some small steps to move toward honesty so we don’t have to frown at ourselves in the mirror.

But instead, we can look clearly … into our own clear eyes.

***************

Here comes Christmas! For your listening pleasure, below is Manger Medley, Jonathan’s arrangement of Away in the Manger, which closes with him singing his gorgeous song, Messiah.  Looking forward to the holidays with you!

Jonathan sings “Let”

Jonathan Sings “Spent This Time”

Jonathan and his partner, Janet Clazzy, play “The Call”

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: