Jesonian: Making Better Humans… February 23, 2014

Jonathots Daily Blog

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drawing of jesusWhat would it be like to spend one day with Jesus?

Would there be a lot of prayer involved? Or would it end up that he was being honest when he said he did most of his praying in a closet by himself?

Would you get lunch, or would he be in the midst of fasting? Actually, the religious leaders criticized him for not fasting, and called him a wine-bibber and a glutton.

Would there be a lot of preaching and studying of Old Testament scrolls? Word has it that when he was around folks he just told stories, inviting them to interpret and therefore involve themselves in their own spirituality.

Would he be critical of the weaker members who surrounded him? I’ve read stories in which he was willing to forgive even adultery, if there was a heart for transformation.

Was he a good Jew? Jews sure didn’t think so. Matter of fact, it was against their law to kill one of their own, but they had no trouble putting a hit out on the Nazarene.

Was he a theologian? A deist? A philosopher? A manic healer? Or a humanist?

This is what we know for sure–he marveled at two things: people who had great faith and people who had no faith.

He believed his mission was to make better humans, not to make people dependent on either their faults or some vision of God.

He was delighted when he saw those who broke through their own insecurities and frustrations, to believe there was more. And he was equally as surprised with those who decided to ignore the evidence of blessing in their lives and take the road of doubt.

This I know–Jesus wanted to make better people.

It’s why the religious people didn’t like him. They wanted a quick work of salvation that got them off the hook through the shedding of blood through sacrificial lambs.

He asked them to be involved in their lives and take responsibility for their actions. They left him hanging, on the bad side of town.

If you’re not grounded in a place where Jesus is being taught to you, with the aspiration that you will continue to grow in your love, appreciation and creativity, then you’re just at the mercy of a gaggle of religious fanatics.

And all religious fanatics have one thing in common–when they run out of enemies on the outside, they start killing off each other.

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Click for details on the SpirTed 2014 presentation

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Please contact Jonathan’s agent, Jackie Barnett, at (615) 481-1474, for information about scheduling SpiriTed in 2014.

click to hear music from Spirited 2014

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Corn on the Cob… April 12, 2013

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cornOn Sunday morning, I will journey to Helotes Hills United Methodist Church in Helotes, Texas. Please understand how delighted I was to discover that the word “helotes” translates as corn on the cob.”

How perfect for me.

Because bluntly, by today’s standards–I’m corny. I don’t pursue macho things in order to be a man, nor do I favor feminine things, to make my sexuality ambiguous. I like things that are real and touch human beings as a whole, instead of segmenting us off into color, size, sexuality or gender.

I’m corny.

Unashamedly, I cry when I run across something that is moving to my soul. I like to love my country, even though there are those who overdo it and those who under-do it. I am not ashamed of my faith in God, although I don’t wear it as a badge to make myself a policeman over other people’s morality, or as a means of establishing my supremacy in traveling first class on the Good Ship Lollipop to heaven.

I’m corny. But what exactly does that mean?

1. I lead with my heart. I will not arrive in Helotes Hills desiring to maintain a healthy distance from these dear folks so as to qualify myself as an artist or a theologian. I want to shake their hands. I want to hug their necks if they’ll let me. I want to laugh with them and I want to cry. Nothing any good happens in the human family if we’re not ready to feel.

2. Once I feel, it opens my spirit. That’s right–faith is when we allow God to speak to us through the feelings of our hearts. Nothing registers in us as people simply because it’s read from the Bible. It has to come with some emotion: a story or some way to stimulate our innards. Then we open up our spirits and faith happens.

3. Once my spirit opens, my mind can be renewed. Yes, that means I can get a little fervor in my thinking. My brain actually lays there like a big pile of mush if I don’t give it some shocking new revelation that gets me thinking again. I want to have fervor. I want my reasoning to grow to the fullness of the measure of the stature of Jesus. I know that sounds corny. So be it.

4. And finally, I want my strength to be empowered. I want to give my body some focus about the best things to do instead of floating from one mishap to another, trying to pretend that things aren’t as bad as they seem.

I want feeling, faith, fervor and focus–so I am going to involve my heart, soul, mind and strength in the experience I will enjoy with the good folks at Helotes Hills.

After all, this is the corn–and I guess that would make me … the cob.

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