Salient…June 4th, 2018

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(3693)

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

You can “go crazy” or you can “stay sane.” One requires you go and another suggests you stay.

If you intend on spending your life chasing what is popular, convinced that the numbers, profit margin and adulation is proof of its value, then you will end up constantly finding yourself splashing down into a pool of disappointment.

After all, consider the word popular–it “pops up,” and then, when it’s proven to be insufficient for human growth, it pops again, like a balloon, and goes away.

Here is a statement: virtue, love, tenderness, creativity, gentleness and honesty will never be popular.

You will never get the majority of the people to agree at any single moment to swing their weight in the direction of faith, hope and charity. These attributes are enduring.

Those who stay and follow them, when the “crazy” goes away, will find themselves positioned to be of help for friends and family who were wounded by the latest failed fad.

You might ask, what’s the difference between crazy and sane?

Crazy is any movement that suggests that the absence of mercy will achieve progress.

Sane is understanding that the greatest progress we can make is to apply mercy to every situation.

It’s all about mercy. There is no kindness without mercy. There is no love without mercy. Mercy is realizing that even if things don’t get better, we can work with what we have to find some good.

This will never be popular.

There will be more screams for revenge, vindication and violence as the years go by.

You can “go” after these causes, but you’ll end up crazy. Or you can “stay” with the power of mercy and remain sane.

So here is your salient moment:

There will be many voices in the wilderness. If you follow them you will go crazy.

There will always be an opportunity for mercy. If you embrace it, sanity will be your prize.

 

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Survival Kit … September 20, 2013

Jonathots Daily Blog

(2010)

buckskinHonest to God–he was dressed in  buckskin.

He had long hair and a bushy-wushy beard, giving him the appearance of a bear that had been almost completely swallowed by a deer sporting “frillies” on its hide. He was explaining, on the National Geographic Channel, the three elements necessary to survive in the wilderness.

To my surprise, toothpaste and deodorant did not make the list. The essentials, by my mountain man’s standards, were a knife, a ball of string and matches.

Hmmm. If I had a knife, I would also need bandages and antibiotic cream. I would never be able to get the string off the ball, and in no time at all, my matches would be wet and useless.

Yes, I am willing to admit publicly that my survival time in the wilderness would be brief and distressed.

But I am cognizant that there is a survival kit for just being a good human.

I think the first thing you need is a sense of self–preferably not exaggerated, by the way, and certainly not depleted by a feeling of inadequacy. But if you can emotionally muster the courage to admit who you are and who you aren’t, you probably tackle a goodly percent of the difficulty involved in remaining sane.

Yes, I do think there’s a point where we all have to say, “I am not scared of me.”

If we are secretly frightened of our own motivations, iniquities and predilections, we will work much too hard to disguise our frailties. That is why, when I am in front of an audience, I make it clear to them who they’re gettin’.

A sense of self is one of the greatest scents we possess, to draw other humans to our trail.

The second thing in the survival kit for being a better person is a sense of humor. Do you understand the purpose?

It just lets folks know, “I am not scared to fail.”

It’s quite ridiculous to be frightened of something that is inevitable. As far as I know, failure is the short-cut to success if it’s used wisely, applied correctly and walked away from with good cheer.

A sense of humor is the greatest sign of mental health.

And the final thing that I feel needs to go into the knapsack of our journey on earth is a sense of God.

Now, my definition of “a sense of God” is different from most theologians. I don’t believe we discover God in the Bible, but actually use the Good Book to confirm our revelations.

I don’t think we retrieve God through prayer–that exercise works best when we’re already well-acquainted with the Person we’re contacting.

No–I think we get a sense of God when we can truthfully proclaim, “I am not scared of people.”

For to dislike people, disdain them, ignore them, judge them or always try to change them into your image is to aggravate the mind of God and cause His Spirit to depart from your midst.

For it says quite clearly that “whenever we’ve done it unto the least of these, my brethren, we’ve done it unto Him.” The parallel is clear: to do good unto God means to eliminate any bigotry we might have toward people.

So there you go.

Even though I am not clad in buckskin and gnawing on beef jerky, I am giving you my survival kit for passing through the wilderness we call life:

  • A sense of self: I am not scared of me.
  • A sense of humor: I am not scared of failure.
  • A sense of God: I am not scared of people.

It may not book you on the National Geographic Channel as a wilderness wrangler, but it sure will qualify you … as a great pathfinder.

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

Please contact Jonathan’s agent, Jackie Barnett, at (615) 481-1474, for information about personal appearances or scheduling an event

The Coloma Passion… August 24, 2013

Jonathots Daily Blog

(1985)

Coloma ChurchFaith without passion is dead on arrival, struck down in the street by a big yellow bus of reality.

Fact is, if you can’t get people emotionally involved with their faith, mental assent, physical presence and spiritual study are very poor substitutes. After all, our heart holds our treasure, and our treasure occupies our heart.

As I journey this weekend to Coloma, Michigan, this is fresh on my mind.

I want to place the fire of desire inside my life. Now, that is merely a clever phrase unless it is defined by saying that my journey needs to include a “dare to care” attitude. Caring is not natural. It is something we have to turn on like a switch and purpose to accomplish, otherwise we lull ourselves into a sleepiness of believing that we’re really compassionate.

Shake the earth. The best way for me to shake the earth is by actually following a simple concept: be the person you admire. Instead of sitting around commenting on virtuous behavior, turn into the biggest copycat that ever stole a good idea.

Also, I would like to start speaking the word of justice. That means I need to learn to talk about rights, because they change wrongs. No one has ever successfully preached against wrongs to make things right. I need to believe that goodness has appeal instead of contending that I’m on the losing team until I get to heaven.

And finally, I want to tell the folks in Coloma this weekend to try to become part of the “sane that remain.” Life is an expedition, so don’t think you’re going to come without provisions, water and patience and survive the safari. There will be a need to outlast your critics. And why do people criticize? Because right now it isn’t popular. That’s not to say it wasn’t popular in the past, or that a great breath of common sense will not bring it into vogue again. It’s just important to realize that if you’re going to have passionate faith, you will have to endure to the end.

So here we come, Coloma: faith with passion.

  • The fire of desiredare to care.
  • Shake the earthbe the person you admire.
  • The word of justiceit takes rights to change wrongs.
  • And the sane that remainbe prepared to outlast your critics.

For in a world of dimness, a single candle can illuminate the path.

Hebrews 12:18-29

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

Please contact Jonathan’s agent, Jackie Barnett, at (615) 481-1474, for information about personal appearances or scheduling an event

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