Catchy (Sitting 49) Soulsbury… May 20th, 2018

Jonathots Daily Blog

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At Matthew’s request, Carlin made the tour of the network morning shows to answer questions about the tragedy on behalf of the corporation.

Wearing a black fedora and a black t-shirt with red lettering which read “Romans 5:20,” he went from one station to another, answering two repetitive questions: (1) What does Romans 5:20 signify? and (2) What does this massacre mean for the movement going forward?

Carlin, having realized that this was going to be the thrust of the inquiries, had prepared his answers well. As to the first probe, he explained that Romans 5:20 was from the Bible, and that it stated that “where sin doth abound, grace doth much more abound.”

This perfectly led him into the second answer. What was going to happen to the movement? “Since it was a movement, it would move–and the choice was to move forward.

While Carlin took care of the public relations side, Soos “hit the ground loving.” She had not joined the others on the plane to Las Vegas, but stayed in Salisbury, donating her blood, talking to the victims, passing out food and doing her best to console those souls God sent her way.

Simultaneously, up in Baltimore, Mother Rolinda was working with ten young women who aspired to the priesthood. She popped into the motor home that had been purchased as a gift by Matthew for her work, took the ten young women with her and headed to Salisbury. She figured there was no better way to learn the ministry than by ministering.

Jo-Jay, stuck in the middle of a nonsensical investigation of evil-doing in Washington, D. C., climbed into her BMW and headed south. By evening time, Rolinda, Soos and Jo-Jay were linked up and spreading as much tenderness and kindness in the community as their bodies would allow.

Meanwhile, back in Las Vegas, Matthew and Jubal were trying desperately to avoid each other. They had always been a little intimidated by each other, but now there was not much to say or much that they agreed upon. Matthew was ready to move forward and Jubal was stalled in a mental traffic jam. How could he go on? The death toll left him vacant of spirit.

Over the next four days, funeral after funeral and tribute after tribute, meshed together into a massive requiem for the lost angels of Salisbury. Condolences, prayers and money rolled in.

Yes, Jo-Jay, realizing that the families would need finance, had started a fund for them, which, within twenty-four hours, had accumulated thirty-one million dollars.

But Soos felt there was more to be done. She was sitting and sharing this with Rolinda when all at once, she stood up, left the room, and headed off to City Hall. She formulated her plan en route. It was really quite simple. She asked the mayor to give permission for a local park to be set aside as a memorial to those who had been stolen by the violence. She envisioned an open sanctuary, where people could come from all over the country and commune with one another for a day or two, express their frustrations and in doing so, maybe discover hope for tomorrow.

Salisbury had a new mayor–a women who was immediately touched by the idea, and in no time at all, squeezed out approval from the city council.

With Matthew’s permission, Soos purchased a hundred high quality tents which slept eight people, and six motor homes.

She called it the “Camp of Remembrance.”

When Carlin got wind of the idea he realized it was not only a great spiritual possibility, but a boon for the promotion. He scheduled himself onto more talk shows, spreading the vision for the “Camp of Remembrance.” In no time at all, people from all over the country made their way to Salisbury, North Carolina–rich, poor, all sorts of colorations and faiths.

Some stipulations were established: no cars within ten miles of the camp so as not to block traffic. No media, cameras, videos or promotion allowed. And a suggestion that people wear their simplest garb. This was further accentuated when Chaneilson, the famous world-wide model, arrived in jeans, t-shirt and no makeup. She stayed for a week–feeding the hungry, playing with the children and sitting and listening to nighttime conversations by the fireside.

The Camp of Remembrance quickly became a conduit for healing. People talked to each other. Cell phones were not prohibited, but generally speaking, were pocketed, as folks made eye contact and connected with one other.

Musicians, ministers and even the hip hop rapper, Secession, came, sharing his heart and giving a new name to the whole adventure.

One night, as a group sat around a blazing fire, he suggested the town should be reclaimed and declared to be “Soulsbury,” where souls could come and bury their fear and prejudice.

The name immediately gained the approval of the nation. Still–no Jubal. No Matthew. And no idea whatsoever of what would become of the rallies.

About three weeks after the tragedy, in the little town of Sunbury, Ohio, a rally was held in the middle of the small town square, with five hundred attendees. There was no professional band with drums and horns and guitars, but they did their best. The high school band appeared, some local singers sang, some nearby farmers provided cider, and hamburgers were cooked on a plethora of grills. The rally was not nearly as polished, and perhaps not nearly as exciting, but it was real, and belonged to the community.

Soon other towns all across the nation were following the example of Sunbury. Churches opened up their doors and allowed people to come in for prayer, discussion and faith-building, using the example of the miracle that was happening in Soulsbury.

After a month and a half, there were nearly two thousand people who had moved to the Camp of Remembrance, to find themselves, their hearts, and to try to believe in their dreams once again.

In the little community, crime disappeared, guns were holstered and differences were discussed instead of ripping at the fabric of peace.

Soos became a permanent part of the tent city. When the tents Matthew provided were filled, other people brought more tents and other sleeping quarters. Rolinda and the sisters worked very hard to maintain a clean and orderly grounds.

It became such a scene of tranquility that the Vice President of the United States paid a visit–and when his motorcade was stopped ten miles from the city, he was driven in a small van by the local police to the location. He made a decision to spend the night and listen to the congregated share their hearts by the fire. The Secret Service was incensed, and might have won the day except that the Vice President insisted that he be afforded the chance to take on the whole experience of the Camp of Remembrance.

What had begun as a series of pep rallies for Jesus across the nation and world had now settled in to a thoughtful consideration of what it really meant to believe.

The movement was changing. Jubal was still nowhere to be found. Matthew was hiding in Las Vegas.

But the heart of the people was in Soulsbury.Donate Button

The producers of jonathots would humbly request a yearly subscription donation for this inspirational opportunity

I’m Looking For… A Content God February 4, 2013

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handsGrouchy, grumpy and growling–three attributes we associate with being cantankerous and therefore, usually equated with getting old. Actually, teenagers can be just as grouchy, grumpy and growling as the retirement set, but apparently the younger generation has a better public relations agent.

I believe in God. I belive in God for three reasons:

  1. The world is too magnificent, too intricate and too well-devised to be an accident of a “Big Bang” idea.
  2. I need someone to love me as I find ways, through trial and error, to be more loveable.
  3. I am arrogant enough to desire immortality.

Now, you will notice that I don’t choose to believe in God simply because the Bible tells me so, that I am fearful of the power of His nature, or even because I’m frightened of a devil’s hell. No–I’m looking for a God who’s content–because I know that I’m better when I allow myself to be.

Unfortunately, that book called the Holy Bible presents at least three different Gods, if not more:

  • There’s the God who created the world, walking around like a proud papa, calling everything good and placing gold stars on daily assignments.
  • Then you’ve got the God who had some sort of faith crisis own and began demanding the foreskin from male children, the deaths of the Amorites and Philistines, the forbidding of shrimp scampi and the killing off of folks in Sodom and Gomorrah because…well, because they weren’t right in the head. We go through a season of this God, who seems to be enamored of blood, requesting that small animals be killed as confirmation of forgiveness, and relegating women to the status of cattle.
  • All of a sudden, some of the prophets from the minor leagues started sharing about a God who didn’t like killing animals and preferred mercy over sacrifice, and this carried through until we were given a live and in-person interview through the deeds and ideas of this fellow named Jesus. We were told that he was God. Suddenly back in our presence was a God who cared about people, told stories, condemned hypocrisy and welcomed repentance.

Recently I told a theologian that I was in search of a “content God” who was thrilled with the invention of fish in the ocean. He frowned and replied, “All the gods of the Bible blend into one God, who was all things and whose ways are mysterious. We will not understand until all things are revealed.” I looked into his dissatisfied face (which was grouchy, grumpy and growling) smiled and walked away.

You can feel free to boil down the entire Bible in an attempt to come up with a God who was able to kill children because they mocked a prophet but also heal the lepers because they cried out in praise. Not for me.

My God is a content one–because I know that I’m better when I am content. My God is the one who sat down on Friday afternoon, during his “week” of creation, and looked at man and woman, which He had just formed, and smiled in joy–with a tear in His eye.

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

Marketing the Big TE… April 1, 2012

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As it turns out, Lazarus, who was recently saved from the grave, was the owner of a public relations firm in Bethany. Being so grateful for not being dead anymore and also as an act of appreciation for his friend Jesus, Lazarus made his public relations efforts available to the Nazarene for his upcoming arrival into Jerusalem. Lazarus had partnered for some fifteen years with his good friend, Hermotheus Goldstein, forming Lazarus and Goldstein.

Hermotheus’ friends knew him as “Hermie”–a quiet, unpretentious man, but quite on top of his game, with a tremendous eye for the bottom line. So Lazarus, respecting his partner’s skill, asked Hermie if he would take over the “Jesus promotional scheme.” A meeting was set for the Tuesday prior to the planned entrance into town.   The time arrived.

Hermotheus introduced himself to Jesus. “Hello, Jesus, my name is Hermotheus, and my friends call me Hermie–Hermie Goldstein.”

“Hermotheus?” repeated Jesus.

“Yes,” said Hermie. “My father was Greek and my mother was a Jew. I guess that makes me a Jeek.”

“Or a Grew…” said Jesus, with a smile peeking through his bushy mustache and beard.

“I suppose,” said Hermie. The uncomfortable silence that often accompanies the minutes after first introductions ensued. At length, Hermie filled in the gap.

“So…how long have you known Lazarus?”

Jesus smiled again. “Long enough to have seen him at his best … and worst.”

Hermie pursued. “So you’re going to be making an entrance of sorts, into Jerusalem–with your entourage?”

At this, Jesus laughed. “Entourage? You know, I never thought of these fellows and ladies as an entourage.”

“Well, you know what I mean,” said Hermie, a bit nervously. “I guess my job here is to showcase this event in the best light possible.”

Jesus nodded. Hermie continued. “Have you thought about how you’ll be set apart from the rest of the crowd surrounding you? For instance, riding a horse might make you look like a king or a great general of the legions of Rome…”

Jesus shook his head. Hermie tried again. “Okay. No horse. How about a camel? That would make you high and lifted up.”

Once again, Jesus expressed his disapproval, so Hermie asked, “What were you thinking about as far as your way of portraying yourself upon entering into our holy city?”

Without hesitation Jesus piped up. “I was thinking about a baby donkey.”

Hermie paused. “A donkey?” he asked.

“A baby one,” Jesus added.

“Aren’t you afraid your feet will scrape on the ground?” Hermie inquired.

“Actually I thought it would be rather nice for the young animal if I was able to occasionally stand up and walk for myself.”

It took a moment for Hermie to realize that Jesus was kidding. “So you have your heart set on a baby donkey…?”

“Well, I wouldn’t exactly phrase it that way. Actually, any little ass will do…”

“All right,” said Hermie. “Let’s talk about people. Your audience. The crowd. Your followers. The individuals that will propel and spread your message. I have inroads into the top dignitaries, the religious community, business men and the wealthy Who’s Who of Jerusalem. We obviously want them to be in the forefront…so that the significance of your arrival in town will be heralded by those in the know.”

“Well, Hermie,” said Jesus. “I would like to go with my standard friends and acquaintances.”

“Okay,” said Hermie. “And who would they be?”

“Let’s see,” said Jesus. “There are the poor. Quite a few former lepers. Those who were blind. Got lots of women. Tons of children. And honestly…a strong contingency from small towns and rural areas of Galilee.”

Hermie sat silently, so Jesus continued. “This isn’t going to be a problem, is it? Honestly, those dignitaries and those religious people … well, I do see them from time to time, but there’s something missing in my chemistry with them. Do you understand what I mean?”

Hermie was frustrated. Out of respect to his partner, Lazarus, he continued faithfully. “I was thinking about some banners, lots of flowers … ”

“I was thinking of palm branches freshly ripped from the trees,” interrupted Jesus.

“How about a chant?” Hermie suggested.  “Something like Israel is great’ or even Yea, Jesus’…

“How about this?” replied Jesus.Hosanna.”

Hermie peered at the backwoods preacher for a long moment. “I can see that many of our ideas are … well, let me say … divergent from each other. But I think we both can agree that it’s important–especially entering the Holy City, and also during this sacred time of Passover–that you do nothing to upset traditions, disquiet the religious leaders or to rob any sense of national pride and sanctity towards our religion.”

Jesus smiled and said softly, “Too late.”

Hermie was disquieted. He wanted to do right by Lazarus, but it seemed everything he attempted to suggest to make Jesus’ entrance into Jerusalem successful was being thwarted by the young Galilean. He offered one final suggestion. “Well, I think you pretty well have decided what you want to do, but can I recommend that you at least call it something like ‘The Triumphal Entry,’ which could easily be marketed as The Big TE? And honestly, if I had been given two months notice, I have a team of ladies down in Jericho who could have woven that onto your robes in a beautiful style, to advertise the event.”

Jesus patted Hermie on the back and said, “Thank you, my friend. The Triumphal Entry it shall be. Of course, without the accompanying souvenier robes.”

Five days later, the entrance into Jerusalem happened on a baby donkey with palm branches and hosannas. It was not a Goldstein production. Hermie had tried to bring Jesus into the first century but he was stuck somewhere back with old ideas.

On the Monday following the event, Hermie, who had missed the actual entrance, caught up with his friend, Lazarus. He detailed his meeting with Jesus and asked Lazarus how things had gone. Lazarus told him it was super.

Hermie said, “Well, he didn’t listen to much I said. But at least I believe he probably took my advice and didn’t upset the religious leaders or go into the temple and create a scene and get them all upset during Holy Passover.”

Lazarus put his arm around his old friend and said, “Well, Hermie, let me tell you …”

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Listen to Jonathan sing his gospel/blues anthem, Spent This Time, accompanied by Janet Clazzy on the WX-5 Wind Machine

 

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Below is the first chapter of Jonathan Richard Cring’s stunning novel entitled Preparing a Place for Myself—the story of a journey after death. It is a delicious blend of theology and science fiction that will inspire and entertain. I thought you might enjoy reading it. After you do, if you would like to read the book in its entirety, please click on the link below and go to our tour store. The book is being offered at the special price of $4.99 plus $3.99 shipping–a total of $8.98. Enjoy.

http://www.janethan.com/tour_store.htm

Sitting One

 I died today. 

I didn’t expect it to happen.  Then again, I did—well, not really.

No, I certainly didn’t expect it.

I’ve had moments of clarity in my life.  Amazingly enough, many of them were in the midst of a dream. For a brief second I would know the meaning of life or the missing treatment to cure cancer.  And then as quickly as it popped into my mind it was gone. I really don’t recollect dying.  Just this unbelievable sense of clear headedness—like walking into a room newly painted and knowing by the odor and brightness that the color on the wall is so splattering new that you should be careful not to touch it for fear of smearing the design. The greatest revelation of all? 

Twenty-five miles in the sky time ceases to exist.

The planet Pluto takes two hundred and forty-eight years to circle the sun. It doesn’t give a damn. 

The day of my death was the day I became free of the only burden I really ever had.  TIME.

Useless.

Time is fussy.  Time is worry. 

Time is fear.  Time is the culprit causing human-types to recoil from pending generosity. 

There just was never enough time. 

Time would not allow it.  Remember—“if time permits …”

Why if time permits?  Why not if I permit?  Why not if I dream?  Why not if I want?  Why does time get to dictate to me my passage? 

It was time that robbed me of my soulful nature.    It was time that convinced me that my selfishness was needed. 

I didn’t die. The clock in me died, leaving spirit to tick on.  

So why don’t we see the farce of time?  Why do we allow ourselves to fall under the power of the cruel despot?  Yes, time is a relentless master—very little wage for much demand.

I died today. 

Actually … a piece of time named after me was cast away.

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