1 Thing That Is Greater Than Love

 

Free Will

I know it is very popular to contend that love is the ultimate force for good, and shall eventually, through struggle, conquer all.

The reality is:

God placed free will above love.

The fact that each one of us has free will to make our choices extends from the heart of God with even greater certainty and power than love.

It is why, although we love our children, we ultimately have to grant them the free will to do that which stirs their hearts, even if we believe it is going to damage or destroy them.

Free will comes to play in the very essence of our country.

Democracy does not mean “I love you” but rather, “you have the right.”

It is astounding to me that people who say they believe in God refuse to grant the courtesy of free will to other humans, when they know that God considers our free will to be sacred, even if we’re determined to kill his son on a cross.

We have tried to escape this reality by manifesting destiny. This is the notion that our lives are predetermined by fate. We feel this lifts the burden off of us to choose, when actually, personal selection is what God intended we pursue.

One thing that is greater than love is free will.

Therefore, whether I agree with your choices or believe them to be righteous, they are your decisions, and shall be honored.


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Iz and Pal (Bedouin Buddies)


Iz and Pal

Jonathots Daily Blog

(4008)

Sitting Fourteen

Left alone.

Young boys run on energy, not smarts. They are fully capable of performing the duties of an army but are minus the insight to know where to march and when to struggle.

Pal paced around the tiny campsite. He flailed his hands in the air, enraged with everything he saw. “Somebody is gonna know we don’t got nothing!” he screamed.

Iz sat quietly, stilled by the circumstances, in what seemed to be a mountain of resolution, but most probably was just a crumbling hillside of destruction.

Karin stood stunned, staring at the two boys, trying to decide what her duty was going to have to be in this youthful fiasco. She needed to be decisive, yet she didn’t trust her own take on the events.

She realized that she should try to talk the boys into going home.  But then she considered Iz. What causes a twelve-year-old boy to contemplate death? Could any of that responsibility be laid at the doorstep of his family?

Then propriety chased down her musings. They certainly needed to go to their parents. These boys did not belong in the desert. If she left them there, the soldier might return with his buddies, to drive them back into town in disgrace, or even for punishment.

The whole thing was so crude and so nasty. It all could blow up and just promote more smugness in this region already permeated with piety.

But in her heart, Karin was a journalist. Her ethics forbade her to be a party to façade. She couldn’t allow herself to become the third wheel in a doomed game destined to produce nothing.

She considered—who would everybody blame? Of course, her. Here she was, out on a lark, trying to get a story. Some scoop to help her maintain her edge as a lead writer for a dead periodical. But she wasn’t looking for a cause. She didn’t want to become “Mother” to the Middle East version of Leopold and Loeb. All she wanted was a story.

Unfortunately, she had fumbled her way into a tragedy.

Pal finally wearied himself of pacing, leaped upon Iz, and the two boys were rolling in the sand, fighting, growing more angry with each flip and punch. So Karin shook herself awake from her deliberations and ran over to pull the boys apart.

“What are you guys doing?” she screamed. Somehow she managed to squeeze her body in between the wrestling pair.

“He won’t talk to me!” Pal spat.

Iz said nothing, just continuing to thrust at the air with his arms.

Karin lost all patience. She threw both boys to the ground and straddled them. “You’re going to listen to me!” she proclaimed. “I don’t know what you think you’re achieving by beating each other to a pulp. Hell, I don’t know why you’re disappointed that the hand grenade didn’t blow you to smithereens. I don’t know why you’re both so damned nuts. But here’s what we’re going to do. We’re going to sit here until everyone is calm and I can sprout some sort of an idea.”

The boys were mad, their chests heaving. They wiggled and squirmed, but Karin’s firm thighs held them in check. They tried a series of insults.

“I hate you.”

“You really are fat, lady.”

“You smell bad.”

Karin laughed at them. At length, the twitching ceased as the young gents lay panting in a pile of exhaustion.

Slowly Karin released, dismounting her captives. “Here’s what we’re gonna do,” she said. “First, let me tell you what I think. There is nothing we can possibly to do determine what that soldier is going to tell or not tell. Secondly, I think the best thing is for me to get a ride back to town—somehow or another—and just talk to my editor and find out if I can get someone else with some brains, or someone maybe willing to share the pain, to become involved in this whole mess. And finally—this is the most important. You guys need to rest and promise me that you won’t claw each other’s eyes out.”

Iz was insulted. “We are friends,” he retorted.

Karin was relieved. He sounded a bit more normal.

Confident that they could no longer kill each other with a grenade and might be too worn out to box each other to death, she headed down the hill toward the nearest path that resembled a road, hoping to find some vagabond with wheels, who might be willing to pick up a disheveled female.

It could be a wait.

But she knew the next stop was her editor.

 

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Sit Down Comedy … September 21st, 2018

Jonathots Daily Blog

(3802)

Women Are Not the Booby Prize

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Published in: on September 21, 2018 at 2:53 pm  Leave a Comment  
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G-Poppers … January 5th, 2018

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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G-Pop has a heart to share something with his children.

There is a certain hint of sadness that settles into a life filled with goodness–goodness, in this case, being defined as a willingness to learn and adapt to the ways of Earth instead of ignoring, rejecting or refuting them.

Once we make our peace with the planet of our birth, and cease to turn our backs on its beautiful, natural ways, some goodness makes its home in our hearts. This is not always permanent, but it visits enough that we should always keep the guest room ready.

But finding the goodness of life does introduce brief periods of melancholy.

After all, if you do decide to “love your neighbor as yourself,” you might actually begin to have empathy for people, even though they don’t love you the same way.

If you pursue becoming “the salt of the Earth,” you might shed a tear over a tasteless society.

Discovering ways to be “the light of the world” just punctuates the darkness.

Contentment sweeps through your soul when you cease to judge others, but realize that their paths will contain sadness and struggle, and find joy in living instead of acting like the whole journey is about making heaven, and speculating with too much revelry about who occupies hell.

There is a certain sadness that accompanies goodness; a mourning that follows being blessed, which requires comforting.

It does not leave us inconsolable–we are not without remedy. God will need to dry our tears.

Rather, it is the sense of yearning to continue to find the grace of God by simply complying with the flow of Earth, and feeling pain for those who continue to rebel.

The Twenty-Third Psalm phrases it best:

“Surely goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life…”

Yes, when the sweet blanket of forgiving goodness covers our wounded souls, it is our mandate to feel deep, heartfelt mercy for those who are chilled by reality.

 

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PoHymn: A Rustling in the Stagnant … January 3rd, 2018

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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Struggle

Struggle!

Don’t give in

Persist!!

Don’t let the dealer win

Object!!!

Deny the latest poll

Reason.

Set a tenable goal

Question?

Nothing’s perfect–nothing at all

Study.

To show yourself approved…

Heed the call.

Heaven sounds like kindness

Open your eyes

Illuminate the blindness

Feel again

Reject the sin

Quell the doubt

Give a shout!

You’re the master

Of your space

A proud member

Of the human race

Shake your head

Resurrect your dead

Ignore the danger

Embrace the stranger

Snarl at the mean

Call it obscene

Struggle, struggle

Boil the trouble

And again I say

Struggle!

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G-Poppers … February 17th, 2017

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(3221)

Jon close up

Feelings.

They normally travel around with a forlorn adjective: hurt. Hurt feelings.

It is the most common malady of humans–even more prevalent than the cold.

Feelings are hurt for one simple reason: each one of us feels that we are more important and valuable than what others may feel at any given moment.

99% of the conflicts between nations are based on hurt feelings. Some of those painful emotions go back generations.

And even though we try to use education and religion to tamp down our need for recognition, deep within our hearts, we want to be treasured instead of trashed.

So we fight.

We argue.

We struggle.

We promote our value in comparison to the worth of others.

So we start grasping at subtle differences like skin color, sexual orientation and even gender.

  • “You can’t be as good as me because you’re a woman.”
  • You aren’t my equal because you’re black.”
  • “I’m more important because I’m an American.”

G-Pop wonders if his readers might want to become part of the solution instead of clogging up the train station heading to confusion.

It’s really simple: walk into your heart and fire apathy–as you hire appreciation.

Everyone needs the grace of gratitude.

The amount we receive determines how much fuel we have to fire up our engines toward success–or crash down in revenge.

G-Pop thinks it boils down to a sip, a cup and a bucket.

1. A sip: “Thanks.”

That just cools the dry, complaining, achy throat of anyone who is tired of being unappreciated.

2. A cup: “Thanks, we could not have done this without you.”

Not only cooled, but a quenching of the aggravation over a history of being used.

3. A bucket: “Thanks. You are just so freakin’ awesome.”

Now you’re tying generosity into the power of their character. It drenches them in joy.

Of course, you can overdo the bucket and you can under-do the sip. But if you’re wondering why human relationships don’t work, it’s because the fluid of thankfulness that should be flowing among us has dried up in favor of the desert of distance and ignorance.

G-Pop will tell you that most of us humans need at least a cup of appreciation a day. That’s a lot of sips–but certainly can be handled with one bucket.

The next person you meet will be parched from the lack of gratitude. He or she feels they’re important.

God has not given you the job to humble others, but instead, to moisten their feelings with legitimate appreciation.

 

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Good News and Better News… December 12th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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good-news-light

She spoke to me in a quiet voice, a bit creaky and worn from decades of conversation, hinting at the possibility of sage wisdom.

“I know Jesus said we shouldn’t worry, but …”

She didn’t finish. Apparently she was leaving it to my imagination to fill in the blank. What did she want me to insert in that space?

“I know Jesus said we shouldn’t worry but…”

  1. He was wrong?
  2. He didn’t live in the 21st century?
  3. He was perfect, so it doesn’t count?
  4. He was never a mother?

The greatest disservice we do to ourselves is continuing to believe that worry performs any reasonable function.

Worry is an anti-energy.

It not only fails to provide assistance but actually drains away faith and hope, leaving us stuck with images of struggle and failure.

Here’s the good news:

Since God knows we’re human, He has lit up the path before us.

Not in the sense of controlling our destiny, but rather, by making it clear what needs to be done next and how we can contribute to the cause.

It’s lit up.

Jesus told us that it’s our job to “discern the signs of our times.”

In other words, see what is available for consideration today, and put our efforts into people and circumstances that are ready for input instead of into situations and individuals which stubbornly avoid solution.

  • The wise men followed a star.
  • They didn’t make up a religion.
  • They didn’t adopt a philosophy.
  • They saw a light and they followed it.

It lit up.

The shepherds went to work, never thinking they would be talked to by angels. But once the angels spoke to them and lit up a possibility, they went with it.

And the whole salvation plan came down to a girl turning to her betrothed, Joseph, and saying, “Excuse me, I need to get down from this donkey. I’m crowning.”

Joseph didn’t question. Joseph didn’t say, “There’s no place for this to happen.” It lit up. He followed.

The good news is that life does light up in front of us with today’s possibility.

The better news is that even though the dark questions may go unanswered, there is great opportunity that soon they will brighten.

 

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