Jesonian: It’s Just Church … May 10th, 2015

 

  Jonathots Daily Blog

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church without walls

Each of us has a social lifestyle, a business profile and a religious inclination.

The difficulty we face is when we fragment these into three different campaigns.

Unfortunately, there is a tendency to look on the church as the scratching of our religious itch.

We tend to get our social lifestyle and business profile from the world around us. So two-thirds of the makeup of the average Christian is forged in the world instead of the philosophy of Jesus.

To further complicate matters, the religious system seems completely incapable of sharing Jesus’ ideas on social lifestyle and business profile. Instead, the church focuses on salvation and heaven.

Therefore, the interest we have at any given moment in salvation and heaven becomes our intensity and intrigue about God.

Obviously, we are more intent on expressing our social and business profiles, so eventually our religious inclination yawns, climbs into bed and takes a nap.

So ministers scratch their heads, trying to figure out why people are leaving the church.

It’s because it’s difficult and almost psychologically impairing to constantly think about the crucifixion of Christ and streets of gold. What kind of person would you end up being? Some sort of fruitcake, heavy on the nuts.

So the more honest-minded humans, who don’t want to be hypocritical, abandon the church and try to find satisfaction for their religious yearnings in everything from Oprah Winfrey, to self-help books, to, ironically, even atheism. (At least atheism gives you something definitive to believe against.)

So what is the Jesonian?

It is the knowledge that Jesus gave us a social lifestyle, and even though there are many tenets to it, it is best summed up with the wonderful phrase: “To he whom much is given, much is expected.”

Jesus gave us a business profile: “Be perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect.”

Stop making excuses and keep evolving toward excellence.

And certainly Jesus gave us the spirited lifestyle goal of “loving our neighbor as ourself.”

While the Church of Christ may be concerned about baptism by immersion, and the Pentecostals may tout the significance of the baptism of the Holy Spirit, the Jesonian is concerned about immersing ourselves in the lifestyle of Jesus.

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Fifteen Hundred … April 30, 2012

(1,500) 

In Los Angeles

Four years and forty days ago, we brought forth to this world a new website, dedicated to the proposition that “NoOne is better than anyone else.”

Too pretentious??

Well, fifteen hundred daily columns IS an accompolishment. Just to give you perspective, fifteen hundred jonathots is the equavalent of ten novels, twenty-five screenplays, forty self-help books and six thousand personal letters informing you of the antics of your ever-expanding off-spring. I certainly did not anticipate ever hitting fifteen hundred–and I do recall that when I reached one thousand, I was convinced I had climbed Mt. Everest. (Obviously, I had not peaked.)  

What have I learned? Here it is: I need to constantly retrieve from my own being an awareness of who I am and where I’m going. Otherwise, I become predictable, socially and culturally amalgamated and devoid of fresh-bread inspiration. To escape such a dreary profile, I have developed four questions I ask myself each and every week. I would like to share them with you on this fifteen hundredth essay, for your own consideration. I will then tell you what my answers are. I would be very curious about your responses.

  1. What do I know?
  2. What do I want?
  3. What do I fear?
  4. What do I believe?

I think you will find that within that quartet of inquisitors, there is a good barometer for the atmosphere you have created for yourself. So on this fifteen hundredth jonathot, I am going to go ahead and answer those questions for myself–and hopefully, for your enlightenment (or at least, amusement).

1. What do I know? People and God are inseparable. Likewise, God and people. If you try to block them away from each other, you will find yourself gradually turning into a curmudgeon, convinced of your faith in the Almighty as you become more and more cynical about one of His favorite creations. It would be similar to going to Colonel Sanders’ house and requesting a roast beef alternative for Sunday dinner.

2. What do I want? I want to be prepared to matter in the present. The past is significant because it grants me insight on foibles. The future is completely up to me; so therefore, until I determine my own motivations, tomorrow is cloudy, to say the least. What I want to do is matter in the present. For instance, as I dictate this jonathots, I am driving on I-5 in Los Angeles, California, backed up in traffic–a condition which seems to be mandatory as a cultural experience from the Chamber of Commerce. So obviously, I want to talk to you about what’s in my heart, but I also want to pay attention to traffic–so that my heart can continue to beat. What is useless is to be frustrated that I am stalled or to wonder how long such a delay will continue. In fact, that’s why I saved my writing session for this drive–so I can stay busy with my mind so it doesn’t flip-flop on me and become my worst enemy. Yes, I want to be prepared to matter in the present. Otherwise, I will overlook my opportunity to touch your life and also rob myself of the benefits of such an experience.

3. What do I fear? I fear a piece of personal dishonesty being disclosed because I failed to be candid. It’s really our only danger, folks. If we have a pure heart and we haven’t tried to deceive ourselves or other people, we don’t have to go into the great press of humanity nervously twitching, wondering when we will be discovered for the charlatans we are. Now, the first time I said something about myself in candor, I was embarrassed, apprehensive and filled with trepidation. I thought the world was going to end because people would know how frivolous and weak I could be. Yet, rather than warranting ridicule, my confession was received with delight, understanding and a bit of reciprocation from those around me, who felt liberated to be equally as transparent. Fear is always born of a lack of love, and a lack of love is always birthed through not caring enough about yourself to be truthful.

4. And finally, what do I believe? Earth needs my attention and heaven is unknown, but by all reports seems well-staffed. Since God made BOTH heaven and earth, I just find it best to work on the turf that is beneath my feet. The only time I get in trouble in my life is when I start looking to the future, searching for destiny instead of opportunity and wondering whether eternity will afford me my due reward. What do I believe in? The joy, contentment, peace, understanding, compassion and silliness that I feel right now. If God thinks He can do better, let Him bring it on. I welcome the expansion.

So there you go.

I will continue to parade my thoughts and feelings in front of you, drenching them in veracity (as much as I know) and salting them with inspiration.I have found that trying to separate my heart from my soul makes me an emotional wreck. Divorcing my spirit from my mind causes me to become mentally dwarfed, incapacitated from achieving renewal. And disconnecting my mind from my body is like walking around in a continual human texting activity, oblivious to the world around me–about to run into a wall.

So here’s to fifteen hundred days we’ve had together. (And let me tell you–I’ve always respected you in the morning.)

And no matter how many more there may be, always realize that you can get in touch with yourself by finding out what you know, what you want, what you fear and what you truly believe. 

  

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