Jonathots … December 11th, 2018


Jonathots Daily Blog

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handbook for touching

The light of the body is the eye

If the eye is evil, then the whole body is filled with darkness. But if the eye is clear, then the whole being can be illuminated.

Honestly, these words can sound like a bunch of gibberish if they’re not understood. This is the trouble with a lot of deep philosophy and passages that insist they are “spiritual.”

Let me phrase it this way:

Your eyes belong to you, but what you see was programmed by others.

Even though you may insist that you are the master of your own thinking and the manipulator of your vision, there is so much programming that’s gone into you–from childhood, schooling, experiences, defeats, failures and pain–which clouds your vision and only presents the images that memory will offer.

We are very critical of prejudice, but the fact of the matter is, nearly all of our preconceived ideas are deeply ingrained within our consciousness long before we have a chance to vote on whether to accept them or not.

This affects our touch.

If we don’t like what we see, we don’t want to get near it. If we don’t want to get near it, we avoid it and fear it. And once we’ve decided that someone or some group is foreign, then it becomes necessary for us to rationalize our choice by attempting to prove that the forbidden topic, race, religion, gender or sexual orientation is hampered by evil.

Thus, white people who grow up in a bigoted environment really do think the black race looks a bit like monkeys. That’s how they were taught to see them. Therefore, that’s how they view them. The end result is, they decide not to be around them and the unity brought on by touch is forsaken.

Likewise, black parents who teach their children that Latinos are lazy and not to be trusted raise children that purposely avoid anyone with light brown skin, unless there’s enough pigment to welcome them as black brothers and sisters.

Also, the Latinos do it with the Asians, and within their own culture, assuming that Cubans are better than Dominicans, and Asians assuming that Chinese are superior to Japanese.

Once our eyes have been fitted with a pair of glasses by our upbringing, making us see the world in a certain way, then our bigotry becomes a spectacle.

Because once we’re afraid–once our “eyeballing” of other human beings promotes darkness in our minds, we are certainly not going to want to be near them, to shop with them, to go to church with them or to ever risk touching them.

Without touch there is no fellowship. Without fellowship there is no commonality, and without commonality, there is alienation.

Take some time during this Christmas season to consider the vision you have of life–the way you see those around you.

Are you controlling your own perception? Or do you have people you were taught were “untouchables?”

Because if you’re not willing to touch people with the tenderness of your hands, you will certainly end up fighting them with your fists.

 

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Good News and Better News … October 12th, 2015

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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Good News Milton, WI

Many years ago, I sensed a voice within me, encouraging me to go out and share my heart and abilities with the world. Some people would say it was the voice of God, while others would probably insist that it was just me, declaring my own bidding.

I don’t care.

I heeded the call, and that decision has taken me on an exotic adventure.

If faith is what we believe

And love is what we feel,

Then hope is the desire to feel what we believe.

I spent yesterday morning in Milton, Wisconsin, at a church called Hope.

I did not go there looking for God. I found Him some time ago.

I went there looking for people–especially people who are interested in breaking out of the repetition of religious and social blandness.

After 40 years, I have found things about people which really set them apart and give them the advantage Jesus intended them to have:

1. People should be welcoming.

It may be hard to do, but it is even more difficult to wait for friendship to appear instead of stepping forward to cause it.

2. I look for people who have nothing to defend.

Don’t forget–trying to defend something makes you defensive. And being defensive makes you a target for criticism rather than the fort of solitude you envision yourself to be.

3. I look for folks who are listening.

Learning never happens without listening, and honestly, listening never happens as long as we’re flapping our jaws, complaining.

And also, there is a quality in human beings that must be brought to the forefront for us to escape animalism or the notion that we’re “little gods.”

4. I look for folks who can be touched.

To be touched, you have to admit that another fellow-traveler can come along and reach in and tickle your heart.

Here’s the beautiful part to my story:

Yesterday morning at Hope Church, I found such people.

Oh, they tried to hide out at first and pretend they were bound to their traditions and their loyalties to programming, but after a while they realized how beneficial it is to free themselves from the responsibility of being religious, and allow themselves to be children of God.

  • The Gospel is not for weaklings.
  • It’s not for people who want to follow the crowd.

It is a message for intelligent people who are fully aware that if they pursue the same path as the world around them, they will get the same result, which seems to be a collision of indecision and bedlam.

I was blessed to be with the folks at Hope.

They are shepherded by a fine gentleman with a tender heart and an increasing desire to be swept away by a great wind of Spirit.

I leave them with one better piece of news:

Whenever you walk through the doors of your sanctuary, develop the determination, the attitude and the will to refuse to leave that building … without being totally inspired.

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