3 Things … April 11th, 2019

Jonathots Daily Blog

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You Should Never Take For Granted

1.  The honesty of your fellow humans

 

2.  The grace of God and the mercy of friends

 

3.  Tomorrow 


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PoHymn: A Rustling in the Stagnant… December 24, 2014

  Jonathots Daily Blog

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PoHymn

Didn’t

I didn’t die today

A satisfying avoidance

I didn’t offend little ones

No millstone around my neck

I didn’t curse a tortoise for slowness

Missed that by a hare

I didn’t find a cancer cure

My apologies to the afflicted

I didn’t put all my words in the right place

Puzzling

I didn’t reject the stranger

Fewer strange, more friends

I didn’t spit on the sidewalk

Walk freely, with confidence

I didn’t win but I didn’t give up

A practical use for tomorrow

 

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Quatrain of Thanksgiving … November 19, 2013

Jonathots Daily Blog

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family 2 thanksgiving

We gather together

To ask nothing

Celebrate our everything

Giddy for tomorrow

 

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

Click for details on the SpirTed 2014 presentation

Click for details on the SpirTed 2014 presentation

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

click to hear music from Spirited 2014

Tomorrow’s Today… May 11, 2013

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North RichlandI never think too much about tomorrow. I try to stay on my daily bread and focus on the activities set before me in this particular twenty-four-hour period. Yet sometimes tomorrow’s activities are part of today’s thoughts.

For instance, I know that I am going to be at Smithfield United Methodist Church tomorrow morning. I really don’t have any worries about it–after nearly forty years of interacting with folks and sharing my heart, I have discovered that the real secret is to keep it simple and never try to make things appear either bigger or smaller than they actually are.

But I have also learned that there are a few goals which can be pursued when pressing flesh with mankind–and womankind, for that matter–which universally set in motion a pattern for success instead of fostering a climate for dissent.

Communication. It’s the main thing on my mind. I believe it’s very important that people understand what I’m trying to say and comprehend who I am. I don’t hide behind books, philosophies, religious attitudes or my history of experience. What I try to do is share a very simple message in a simple way, tapping as much excellence in my talent as I am able to do in the moment.

I do not think that we will ever achieve fellowship or stimulate an atmosphere for renewal when we’re presenting things to each other that we don’t understand.

Case in point: I don’t talk about heaven very much. It’s not that I don’t believe in it–it’s just that for most of us it’s not the next stop on the bus line. You’ll rarely hear me mention the devil, simply because there is a dark nature in each of us which already wants to believe there are evil reasons why we don’t achieve righteous conclusions.

I chat about human things and how to do them better. In the process of that communication I hope to make connection. That link-up is a simple question: “Can I help?”

I just don’t think we do much to assist our brothers and sisters by giving them more problems, more commandments and more reasons to despair. If you can’t edify folks, then exhort them. If you can’t exhort them, encourage them. If you can’t do any of those three, you might just want to leave ’em alone.

After I’ve made a connection, I am joyously looking forward to a sense of contentment. What is contentment? “I discovered my best and I gave it to you.”

Candidly, without knowing that this is true, we either become grumpy or obnoxiously make excuses for our failure.

And the final part of the process is continue. Yes, I want to continue to do what I’m doing for as long as I’m able to pursue it, while garnering a new idea from every encounter.

I’ve been criticized by friends and family because I listen to every concern or criticism and weigh it in relationship to what I know–even if the words spoken were an attempt to hurt. I don’t think there’s as much danger in our being overly analytical as there is in repelling critique that might just give us a better path.

So when I come to Smithfield tomorrow, I want to communicate. I want to make sure they understand me.

I want to make a connection–to see if I can lighten their load instead of piling up their wagons with useless trash.

Because when I leave, I want to have the contentment that I’ve given my very best to these fine children of God.

And I also would like to know that because I was with them, I can improve the quality of my own presentation.

That’s what I call tomorrow’s today. It’s a quick review in my heart and soul to renew my mind, looking for better ways to use my strength. And because of the beauty of the process, I am often granted the blessing of leaving a town having edified both my audience … and myself.

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*****

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

Alamore … April 24, 2013

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alamoTravis, Bowie and Crockett–three men who found themselves arriving at an old mission in San Antonio in late February, 1836. They had one thing in common. Each one of them had experienced illustrious careers which had now ebbed, leaving them in a bit of disarray and even some disgrace.

All three had gone off looking for adventure, to reestablish some sense of purpose in their lives. Simultaneously, a large army from Mexico, led by Santa Ana, was invading Texas to conquer the state once again for the empire. The three men, along with about two hundred other individuals, made a decision to take a stand at the Alamo, to ward off the attackers.

No one can question their bravery. No one would ever cast aspersions on their decisions and motives. But truthfully, it was not necessary.

Sam Houston had a plan to lure Santa Ana deeper and deeper into Texas while he continued to train an army and avoid conflict by strategically retreating. The Alamo was a symbol of courage–but in a strange sense, also a surrender by three men who yearned for one last patch of glory.

It’s a lesson for all of us.

As I head off tonight to Alamo United Methodist Church, I arrive as one human being who wants to see things improve but am in no hurry to terminate my own existence to achieve those results. I am not so sure that we do a great work for God when we try to make our lives seem meaningless, as if we’re only here to prepare for heaven. I am not positive that teaching people to be vulnerable to despair and leery of conflict with the intent of surviving, is the best profile to share a gospel that was birthed to bring newness of life.

Even though I greatly admire the courage and bravery of Travis, Bowie and Crockett, I would prefer to stay alive to fight yet another day, when circumstances are favorable to victory. Here’s what I’ll tell them tonight at the Alamo:

  1. Don’t die if you can live.
  2. Don’t give up if you know you still have more.
  3. Don’t believe it’s over just because you can’t envision tomorrow.

I have coined a new word today–Alamore: reaching the point when you think it’s time to go to heaven, but instead, you bring your life back down to earth.

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Humbled, Aware, Empowered … September 7, 2012

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I AM:

Humbled by the beauty of our nation

Aware that beauty is only skin deep

Empowered to find the heart and soul of my countrymen

Humbled by the generosity of my new friends

Aware of the responsibility of their faith in me

Empowered by the uplift and confidence it provides

Humbled by the need around me

Aware of what I can do

Empowered to go ahead and do it

Humbled by the grace of grace

Aware that grace is given to the humble

Empowered to embrace productive humility

Humbled by my weakness

Aware of my gifts

Empowered by the balance granted me by my Creator

Humbled by the overwhelming need

Aware of the needs already met

Empowered to continue to pursue meeting needs

Humbled by fatherhood

Aware of the requirement for my children’s independence

Empowered to see them do greater things than me

Humbled by failure

Aware of teeming progress

Empowered by promising opportunity

Humbled by what I create

Aware that it was birthed through adversity

Empowered to persevere

Humbled by tomorrow

Aware of today

Empowered by yesterday

Or sometimes …

Humbled by yesterday

Aware of tomorrow

Empowered by today

Humbled, aware, empowered:

  • The balance of power for this important hour.

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Silly Little Rhymes, Searching for a Reason … August 20, 2012

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Love is never easy

But the hate steals all you got

Faith may take some time

But doubt demands your lot

Don’t ignore the small

Or peer up at the tall

From grace you surely may fall

Follow Jesus, read Brother Paul

Don’t decide tomorrow

On what has happened today

Wait for the third one to come

For God to reveal a way

People are the only God

That we may ever see

Treat them quite divine

The results will make you free

I never have to lie

If I remove all the shame

I never have to die

If God forgives my blame

Hardly poetry. Yet … possessing motion.

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

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