No Longer Work for Free

Posted in : poems

I did you a favor,
Why is it you can’t see?

My intentions pure, work ethic hard—
Why you doin this to me?

You’re worried you’d go under,
Different I thought it’d be.

I tried my best to do required,
Did my best to make you see

That some are out there that’re good,
You don’t b’lieve me obvi’sly.

So go ahead and burn a bridge,
Or one or two or three;

Keep living, doing, operating,
I’ll no longer work for free.

—Travis J
12.45 AM-ish, 3/20/2012


Biggest Mistake Ever

Posted in : poems

Biggest mistake ever,
I ran away too soon.
It scared me when I thought of you
and thought I had no room.

On one hand I’d many visions
and I had so many dreams;
then it felt like the other hand
Was you and me and all our means.

I thought the places each would take me
were much too incompatible.
So panicked, made a decision,
that’s, alas, regrettable.

Why couldn’t I remember?
Why’s it that I couldn’t see..?
Why do I think it impossible,
an eternal care for me..?

I thought the differences and the cash,
Would make you run away.
So what I did? Headed it off,
Thought there wasn’t any reason we should play.

How quickly I forgot,
Or chose simply to not see—
It’s possible, it might’ve been
That you really, truly cared for me.

Though I can say that I was strong,
remained steadfast, stuck to my guns—
that confidence and comfort’s empty,
‘cuz all I’m left with is re-runs.

This attitude I’ve got,
and these conclusions that I’ve reached,
If I was honest, they’re prolly fair,
since our relationship I breached.

Travis J
1.00 AM-ish
February 29th, 2012


Careful What You Wish For

Posted in : about life/the Christian faith

Careful what you wish for, because you just might get it.

No, obviously I wasn’t the one who originally came up with that cliché that we’ve all heard. Wish I was, though—I’m a businessman, I’d copyright it/or sell it….*daydreams*

Oh. Blog. Right, sorry, got distracted 😉 .

Seriously, how many times have you prayed, or have you been in a congregation or Bible study where you or someone else prayed something like,

God, please prepare me for what it is you want me to do, and show me the Way and the Path You have for me.

We have to be more conscious with our prayers, folks. Mean them more. Don’t be repetitive. Don’t be clichéd with God—you must be straight up with Him. He knows everything, and knows your heart and mind anyway, so why not pray with that understanding? Remember four things, when praying to God:

1)      He’s not a Santa Claus.

2)      Don’t be repetitive—Scripture specifically states He don’t like that much (Matthew 6:7).

3)      He already knows not only what you NEED (what the best path for you is), but He knows what you WANT (stuff that’s on your mind that you want to attain/fix/overcome/etc.), so don’t act like you are revealing anything groundbreaking to God that was previously unknown to Him.

4)      You’re not doing HIM any FAVORS, by praying.

Back to the original point—“Be careful what you wish for because you just might get it.” Those of us who have chosen to live lives dedicated to Christ and becoming increasingly more like Him, and have chosen to live lives striving for disciplining ourselves and others in His name to also become more like Him must mean what we pray, and pray what we mean. We fall so in love with Christ that we often find ourselves thinking and praying that we just want Him to guide us, and show us what He wants us to do on this earth; and that we just want to be used by Him in powerful ways.

And I’m not downing that. I think it is perfectly healthy for us to want that; to desire it; to pray and ask for it. That is a good thing.

But we must keep our perspective. Oftentimes we think that our faith is sunshine, lollipops, rainbows, and “~getting people saved~”, or that it’s always church campy, or church retreat-like. Or we think that living out the principles of Christ and knowing God with our lives is just like a really awesome short-term mission trip or camp that never ends.

When we make that decision to become disciples of Christ, and we accept His gift and are redeemed, we, in essence, are making the decision to become vessels of sharing His love and living our lives in His Way. This is not something that is to be taken lightly. It means that we are going to end up changing in some way. In big ways.

By the way—side-note: Now that’s where we lose a lot of people. And by “lose a lot of people”, I don’t mean,

Oh we as Christians didn’t get the dang CONverts, woe is us! We wanna make everyone like us!

I don’t mean it that way. What I mean is, lots of times, when it comes down to it, there are people that do not take that extra step to be a disciple of Christ and really live out His ways because they think they have to change too much about themselves. Now I’m talking about two different types of people here:

1)      People who are lost and that are on the verge of choosing to accept the free gift of Christ’s redemption that He offers.

2)      People that HAVE ACCEPTED the free gift of Christ’s redemption that he offers and “are saved”…..but then, they just want live the rest of their lives “for themselves”, and never have the courage to just step out and see where the Lord leads them.

Whichever the case; whether we’re talking about a “lost person” that does not accept the gift of Christ, or whether we’re talking about a Christian that “got saved” but then just sorta coasts for the rest of their life on earth (you know the types—they sit in a church pew every now and then, they hear a sermon every now and then, and generally think, “eh, I’m not a terrible person, and I’m ‘saved’.”), WHICHEVER of those two types we’re talking about, there’s something we have to understand. When we DO make that commitment to Christ, life DOES NOT become all sunshine and lollipops and happiness.

I’m sorry, it just doesn’t.

Now I fervently believe that you do get sort of an ultimate inner peace that you can’t really explain when you sell out to God through Christ–I’ve seen/felt/observed this in my own life, and heard plenty of other testimonies of people that will say the same thing. But that doesn’t mean that somehow life is just coast-mode, and you pretend like everything’s fine for the rest of your life.

A single verse of Scripture from the Bible is at the heart of this blog. It’s Acts 9:16. The context of that verse is a story where someone that hates Christians and hates Jesus is killing Christians, but then has an experience with God. Verse 16 is God Himself/Jesus talking, and He says, “…I will show him [the Christian-killer that’s having a conversion experience to become a disciple of Christ] how great things he must suffer for My [God, Jesus] sake.

It was God/Jesus saying that statement. (If you’re confused as to why I put a slash between God and Jesus, just ask. It’s actually really simple, despite what people say.) God/Jesus was saying that this guy who’s becoming a disciple of Christ is going to be a “chosen vessel”. That person is going to be someone who’s seeking after Me and is going to be someone that does great things in the name of God and Jesus Christ. This guy that’s a Christian-killer is going to be INSTRUMENTAL. But even though that guy is going to be instrumental, he is going to suffer things in life; many things.

One of the keys to being able to deal with such challenges is the fact that when you have an encounter with Christ and you slowly begin reflecting His character and taking on His traits, you get to a point where many things that used to bother you simply don’t anymore. Your perspective gets heightened and improved. Many things that could happen to you that seem absolutely horrible, you come to realize are not the end of the world, and that they cannot completely destroy you. Nothing can destroy you. You’re a child of God. You begin to walk around with a heightened sense. When you make a *real* decision and a *real* effort to accept the gift of Jesus Christ and begin an honest and real effort to become like Him, you *will* notice this. It is not something about which I have to pretend or make grandiose statements. This is just what happens.

Back in that Bible reference I was making, this “guy that is having the conversion experience, and is gonna suffer things in life” is Paul. This is the guy that ended up writing most of the rest of the entire New Testament, and is where we find much of what we believe as Christians. The Bible records that he ends up being shipwrecked, imprisoned, beaten, has an ailment/condition of some sort for the rest of his entire life that bothers him and causes him pain of some kind (be it physical or mental/spiritual—he’s bothered by it). Look at what all he has to go through. This man—Paul—is someone we all point to as simply one of the most heroic, astounding, amazing followers of Christ who ever lived. And yet—he suffered SO much. Make sure you’re willing to do the same. Make sure you’re honest with yourself and with God the next time you’re beseeching God to lead you where He wants you to go.

Cuz He’ll do it.

—Travis J
12.00 AM-ish, January 21st, 2012


2012 Resolutions

Posted in : about life/the Christian faith,stream of consciousness/random

“New Year’s Resolutions” haven’t usually been something I do because I kinda always had a philosophical block against them. But last year, I *did* do them. Click here to check out last year’s: https://ktravisj.com/blog/perfectlyincomplete/?p=898 . And I accomplished them, pretty much. Like I said last year, I’ve never much believed in putting much stock in “New Year’s Resolutions” because I honestly make it a daily goal to meet goals–both long and short-term goals–so I don’t often have a lot of things I’m “trying to work on”. But I certainly do have some. We all do.

Here are this year’s:

2012 Resolutions

1 ) Love, and ALLOW myself to be loved, both

2 ) Don’t take as much BS from people–personally or professionally

3 ) Don’t second-guess myself

4 ) Clean up my language (case in point: #2 on this list haha..)

5 ) Remain true to myself and don’t sell out–personally or professionally

6 ) facebook LESS

7 ) Remain humble and remember that the Lord God has played a huge part in causing my circumstances and my environment to give me the opportunities to use my free will to get where I am and attain the things I have; it’s been a combination of both Him and His influence, and then also my utilizing my resources well. It is both. It is not only me.

8 ) Slow down, have more down-time, do nothing more often

9 ) Call, text, or message a random friend/family member/acquaintance more often, just to honestly see how they are doing

10 ) “Go for it” more often, with things


Three Things

Posted in : poems

It’s time for alert—
We’ve suffered a hurt.

No one can we trust
(in dad’s ways that’s a must).

After his departure, what were we to do?
World’s cold, people rough—all this I knew.

Our assets, our things, our futures at stake;
Of what of all this was I s’posed to make?

Nowadays, I put up with less,
I’m not gonna lie—of that I confess.

Peoples’ words, their intentions, their wastes of time—
They can throw away theirs, but they’ll have none of mine.

Since his death, priorities have shifted,
Some of my hearts’ concerns have drifted.

It made us tough, it made us hard—
When the three of us had our whole worlds jarred.

Now there’s three things, I need to ask,
Whilst throughout my life in Your glory I bask:

First now I need to return, please,
Please grant me Lord, some peace, some ease.

And two please help me not be cold—
And dread time’s been wasted when I get old.

Three help me remember it’s not about me,
And pray not always so selfishly.

I know You have us in Your hands,
Remind my subconscious to understand.

—Travis J
11.45-ish PM, 12/6/2011


Where’s My Fire for God I Once Had?

Posted in : about life/the Christian faith

Sometimes we worry about “Where’s that passion for God that I once had?” And we think “Where’s my fire?”

Many of us can remember a time where we reached a point in our lives where we felt closer to God than we ever had before. We reached a point of self-actualization where we gave up thinking “life is about me“, and we militantly adopted the mindset, instead, that “life is about God“. It became like second nature to us. We wanted it more than we wanted air, or food, or water.

For some of us it was at a summer youth camp that sparked it in us. For some it was after we’ve devoted some serious thought, time, and study—either the Bible directly, or some other literature about the ways of God. Still others may have reached a personal realization that they have a desire to be near to God and live for Him in any other number of ways I have not mentioned here.

But whatever the case may be, there are those of us who can remember when we fell so in love with God and had such a “fire for Him“, as we often say, that simply defies explanation and is indescribable. Then as time goes on, we “lose” that fire for some reason. It scares us. We don’t know why. It’s not that we’ve necessarily been “talked out of what we believe” by anyone. And it’s not as if we have any real rational REASON, nor is it that we deliberately CAUSE our fire to die down…it just…does. And we don’t know why. And it scares us.

Whenever this happens, whenever we reach a place where we worriedly ask ourselves “Where’s my fire for God? Where’s my passion?” We do not have to feel worried.

Before we go any further, let’s consider what it is that really worries us in these situations and figure out why it bugs us so much when we “lose our fire for God and we want it back.” What worries us in these situations is not JUST the fact that “We lost our emotional drive to live for God and our hardcore love for Him”.

What worries us is what we think this loss of fire MEANS. We think that either we have “lost our faith” or we think that God feels so distant, maybe He really doesn’t love us anymore. As far as “losing our faith” goes—where’d it go? Did we mis-place it? Did someone talk us out of it? Did the devil come and SNATCH IT AWAY from us!? Certainly not—nothing’s changed. It’s just a feeling, or just an emotion that has changed. Then as far as the other thing—our thinking that “God doesn’t love us anymore”—surely we’re aware of the absurdity of this statement. God is unchanging even though we live lives that are in a constant state of change. He exists in a way that He is beyond needing to ever “change” for any reason—HE just IS. Colossians does not say that God’s existence, or His love, is dependent on anything else. In fact it says quite the opposite—it says all things exist BECAUSE of Him, not the other way around. He’s independent, He just IS. These thoughts that God has somehow withdrawn His love for us, or that He “will withdraw His love or blessings from us if we don’t have a huge fire for him” are unfounded, and we cannot let them worry us!

You see, “the fire” itself is not the end-all, be-all goal for the Christian. Our lot in life as Christians from the moment we decide to become a Christian and onward from that point is to live out the rest of our lives being discipled, and being ever-transformed into becoming more like Christ. That awesome and burning “fire” that we feel at times that helps spur us on in spirit is great, but we do not necessarily need that fire to live as we are intended to live, which is to live out the things of God. It is even more important to get to a place where we habitually love people and make choices to live for God as an overflow. These things should just become normal activities that no longer REQUIRE us to “feel that that fire” to spur us on.

It is true that God wants to know us personally and cares about our well-being, and that He wants to draw near to us, and we do feel like it is painful when we “don’t have that fire” and it makes us think we’ve somehow drifted away from Him. What we must then do is to take an assured confidence in the things of God, and the things that we have come to learn about His nature and His character and love Him for those things. Even though the fire is gone, this doesn’t mean we have to feel like we have broken relationship with Him.

Think about it, I’ve heard it said that,

“the staple of a true friendship you have with another person is when you can sit in each other’s presence in silence and it’s not awkward.”

Or something like that. I didn’t come up with that one, I’m not sharp enough. I’ve just heard it before. And whether you’re talking about a romantic/sexual relationship or just a regular friendship, it rings true. When you FIRST met that other person, yeah you had a lot of new stimuli and it was exciting and whatnot. But over time, when you grew closer, learned more about each other, and had experiences together, your relationship has grown in strength. And honestly, that secure relationship or friendship between the two of you that may not have a “fire” like it did when you first met, may even be stronger than many “new” friendships or relationships you may have with other people right now.

This is how it is with God Himself when the “fire we have for Him” has “died down”. It is a quiet confidence that we can have.

So then what are we to think? Since I’m saying that it’s not a bad thing for us NOT to “feel the fire anymore” as strongly as we once did, should we think that it’s a bad idea to inspire young believers or new believers and for them to get that initial emotional “fire for the heart of God”? Should we think that, “It’s just emotional and so we shouldn’t even pay much attention to inspiring that flame in any other young or new believers.”? I disagree. I think that spark of hardcore passion for God, and drawing nearer to God can be very useful!

Emotion, itself, is not a bad thing. There are two extremes we are to avoid. First, let us not concern ourselves with dousing the fire of young or new believers simply because we identify “it’s just an emotion and it probably won’t last.” Second, let us not exalt feeling the fiery passion for God above being able to habitually practice the ways of God when the fire passes away.

It is not fleeting emotion that is our goal to chase as Christians, but we should not think that feeling this fire is somehow wrong or useless. Although that fire and feeling of nearness to Him can be beautiful, that fire, at the same time, can also be the start of something else beautiful that lasts far beyond the fire’s dying out.

May God bless you.

(this piece of writing was inspired by pages 115-116 of “Mere Christianity” by C.S. Lewis. To be more accurate, the section of the book that inspired this piece of writing was the final paragraph, paragraph number 9, of chapter 9, of book III of Mere Christianity. My purpose with this piece of writing is not to plagiarize Mr. Lewis’ brilliance as my own—his level of intellect being one of which I could never even dream of attaining. Rather, I’ve had conversations with fellow like-minded Christians time and time again about how “we lost the fire we once had”—and it’s a bit of a distressing concept to us.)

–Travis J
September 21, 2011 ca. 8.00-9.00 PM


Nervously Eager

Posted in : about life/the Christian faith,poems

Nervous about tomorrow,
Though I know I shouldn’t be.
It’s not the task itself,
But on what it may mean.

It’s got me second-guessin,
Myself, my life, my mission.
Cuz once you sign that dotted line,
I mean, once you initial;

That’s it, there go the plans,
They’re done!
I know there’s so much that I want to do,
And deep down I know it’s ALL for You,

But I want to do the best,
Live the life for which I’m fitted.
Why do my talents seem to be
The enemy against whom I’m pitted?

The pressure s’posed to have subsided,
It’s supposed to have been gone.
This kind of stress and second-guess,
I thought its days were done.

Oh good now made myself sick,
That’s all I really needed.
Whether the weather or whatever,
I simply feel defeated.

Too confident to cry,
Too assured to worry,
Too concerned I’ll go too slow
Yet still get in a hurry;

Why do I feel I’m “forcing it”—
That’s what I’ve done, and always been;
It’s worked real well, I’ve had the faith,
Doubtless had His guidance without end.

I’ve gotta let it simmer,
And gotta get some sleep;
For tomorrow, yes tomorrow,
Liable to make a big leap.

Travis Jones
9-5-2011, 9-6-2011,
12.24 AM (on the 6th)


Charley Reese’s Final Column for the Orlando Sentinel

Posted in : about life/the Christian faith

Note from Travis J:
This is NOT an original piece of writing by me–I am re-posting this because I like it so much. Credit 100% goes to Charley Reese.


545 vs. 300,000,000 People
-By Charlie Reese

Politicians are the only people in the world who create problems and then campaign against them.

Have you ever wondered, if both the Democrats and the Republicans are against deficits, WHY do we have deficits?

Have you ever wondered, if all the politicians are against inflation and high taxes, WHY do we have inflation and high taxes?

You and I don’t propose a federal budget. The President does.

You and I don’t have the Constitutional authority to vote on appropriations. The House of Representatives does.

You and I don’t write the tax code, Congress does.

You and I don’t set fiscal policy, Congress does.

You and I don’t control monetary policy, the Federal Reserve Bank does.

One hundred senators, 435 congressmen, one President, and nine Supreme Court justices equates to 545 human beings out of the 300 million are directly, legally, morally, and individually responsible for the domestic problems that plague this country.

I excluded the members of the Federal Reserve Board because that problem was created by the Congress. In 1913, Congress delegated its Constitutional duty to provide a sound currency to a federally chartered, but private, central bank.

I excluded all the special interests and lobbyists for a sound reason. They have no legal authority. They have no ability to coerce a senator, a congressman, or a President to do one cotton-picking thing. I don’t care if they offer a politician $1 million dollars in cash. The politician has the power to accept or reject it. No matter what the lobbyist promises, it is the legislator’s responsibility to determine how he votes.

Those 545 human beings spend much of their energy convincing you that what they did is not their fault. They cooperate in this common con regardless of party.

What separates a politician from a normal human being is an excessive amount of gall. No normal human being would have the gall of a Speaker, who stood up and criticized the President for creating deficits. The President can only propose a budget. He cannot force the Congress to accept it.

The Constitution, which is the supreme law of the land, gives sole responsibility to the House of Representatives for originating and approving appropriations and taxes. Who is the speaker of the House now? He is the leader of the majority party. He and fellow House members, not the President, can approve any budget they want. If the President vetoes it, they can pass it over his veto if they agree to.

It seems inconceivable to me that a nation of 300 million cannot replace 545 people who stand convicted — by present facts — of incompetence and irresponsibility. I can’t think of a single domestic problem that is not traceable directly to those 545 people. When you fully grasp the plain truth that 545 people exercise the power of the federal government, then it must follow that what exists is what they want to exist.

If the tax code is unfair, it’s because they want it unfair.

If the budget is in the red, it’s because they want it in the red.

If the Army & Marines are in Iraq and Afghanistan it’s because they want them in Iraq and Afghanistan …

If they do not receive social security but are on an elite retirement plan not available to the people, it’s because they want it that way.

There are no insoluble government problems.

Do not let these 545 people shift the blame to bureaucrats, whom they hire and whose jobs they can abolish; to lobbyists, whose gifts and advice they can reject; to regulators, to whom they give the power to regulate and from whom they can take this power. Above all, do not let them con you into the belief that there exists disembodied mystical forces like “the economy,” “inflation,” or “politics” that prevent them from doing what they take an oath to do.

Those 545 people, and they alone, are responsible.

They, and they alone, have the power.

They, and they alone, should be held accountable by the people who are their bosses.

Provided the voters have the gumption to manage their own employees…

We should vote all of them out of office and clean up their mess!

Charlie Reese is a former columnist of the Orlando Sentinel Newspaper.

Note from Travis J:
This is NOT an original piece of writing by me–I am re-posting this because I like it so much. Credit 100% goes to Charley Reese.


The Devil Made ‘Em Do It, But It Turned Out OK

Posted in : about life/the Christian faith

If you’re like me, you think about things sometimes. Deeper things. Either now or at some point in your life, you’ve asked yourself things like,

What’s the meaning of life?“, or

What’s my purpose?“, or

What is it that I am SUPPOSED to do in this life?“, or

Is there anything else AFTER this life?

Etc. etc. etc.

Or things along those lines. For some of us, we do believe in Jesus Christ as one of the three Members of the Holy Trinity, Who, came to this earth in flesh, as the Son of God, Who is another member of the Holy Trinity. And we do believe that this Jesus Christ offered Himself as a sacrifice per the rules by which God the Father set up the foundations of the world, and cleansed humanity from sin–or gave us the chance to accept that cleansing, that is.

Just wanted to type that previous paragraph in order to clear up where it is from where I’m coming, in case anyone was wondering. My point in this post isn’t to debate Christianity “yea” or “nay”. I’ll go toe-to-toe with anyone at any time as to why I personally believe in these things–it’s just not what I wanna talk about primarily, here right now in THIS post.

As I said, I am a “Christian”. Sometimes I hesitate to even utter that sentence. “Why?” you ask? Is it because I am ashamed of Christ? As Paul would say, “God forbid.” No, that’s not the reason–I happily and honestly “stand up for” and “claim” Christ, publicly. The reason I say that sometimes I hesitate to utter that “I’m a Christian” is because of the pool of hypocrites we find ourselves surrounded by, on this earth, who claim also to be “Christians”, but do not give much thought to deeper things in life, or actual raw Scripture and the ideas presented in Scripture or anything. And so, when those hypocrites call themselves “Christians”, those of us who put forth actual true effort into living out the things we believe ALSO call ourselves “Christians”–it just seems watered down on my end, you know? And honestly, it’s confusing and ends up making things harder to understand for non-believers. So, eh, it’s just one of those things.

So, back to what I said at the beginning of this post before I went off on a tangent. If you’re like me, whenever you hear Bible lessons and stuff sometimes, you begin to ask yourself questions about life, God, “my Christian faith”, “what I believe”, “why I believe it”, “is it real?” etc.

One of the things that we as Christians remind ourselves of all the time is that good ol’ piece of Scripture, Romans 8:28, which states that all things we come across in life will always work out for the good for those of us who believe in God, ACTUALLY trust Him, and REALLY have faith in Him, and that our lives are spent in subjection to His Will and His Ways. It’s a way that, lots of times, Christians make it through the tough times. Something bad happens–someone close to you dies, you lose your job, someone dumps you, you’re forced to move away, etc. Oftentimes when these types of things happen, we remind ourselves of the promise of Romans 8:28, “All things work together for the good for those who love God and are called according to His purposes.” I’m not doubting that at all–I actually really believe in that. This idea of God’s working things for the good for those who are called according to His purposes is the reason that I am writing this post in fact. Let me explain:

Sometimes we may be tempted to think,

Well, if you’re saved, then Satan really has no power over you, and so it’s not really Satan that’s causing bad stuff to happen to you, it’s just the ebb and flow of living in a sinful world.

Or sometimes, we may be tempted to think like Job’s friends and think,

Well, if bad stuff is happening to us, then it must mean we’re not really saved, or not really having enough faith or whatever.

And then there are the non-Christians (Or Christian too, really) skeptics, who just claim that,

Ok, yeah, that little Romans 8:28 promise of ‘everything working out for good’ is just one example of the ‘opiate of the masses’ idea, and Christians must all suck from that straw in order to convince themselves that life is all ok, but really, all of that stuff is imaginary, and Christians are actually mentally inferior for believing such foolishness.

And hey, honestly, I don’t have it all figured out, ok? I’m not going to pretend I know 100% the answer to all of our thoughts about things like this, not am I going to pretend there are singular verses or passages in the Bible that just lead to a 100% conclusive, indisputable decision, and, YOU BETTER BELIEVE IT OR YOU’RE WRONG AND JESUS DOESN’T LOVE YOU! No. What I want to do is illustrate how VALID the Romans 8:28 promise is, with a Biblical account; and then I want to ask you, “If it’s true in this case, in the Bible, why wouldn’t it be true for you, today, in our times?”

Read John 13. I’m sorry to give a big ol’ call-to-action like that, but do it.  Particularly pay close attention to John 13:2 and John 13:3 (honestly, if you already know the story, you don’t have to read the whole chapter, but if you read those two verses, you’ll see what I’m talking about more clearly in this post). It starts off saying, clear as day, that

the devil put it into Judas’ heart/mind/soul/spirit (whatever) to betray Jesus.

Then, next verse, it says, God had put all things into Jesus’ hands. That is to say,

things were under control“–things were not rattled out of control by Satan.

How do we reconcile that? If this idea that “Satan” or “The Devil” is an entity that is 100% opposed to God and His ways, how is it that this entity’s actions stay within the plan of God? And oftentimes as Christians, we’re confused–we get so sad about Jesus crucifixion, and how we think it was so unfair, and so unjust when we think about how Jesus Christ was tortured and died on the cross for us, an undeserving people in an equally undeserving world. And so we think, “Ok, how IN the world could that be a good thing? And how could it be part of ‘God’s plan’ if it says that the devil caused it to happen?” Even though the crucifixion seems horrible to us, what? It needed to happen. It was supposed to happen. “All things work for the good…according to His purposes.

You see? This is the way it, just, works, out. It just DOES. When tragedy occurs, yeah, oftentimes it’s Satan’s causing it to happen. Now, whether you think Satan is a literal figurative being that lives in a different realm and literally triggers events and bad things, or whether you think the idea of “Satan” is just the effects of a sinful world, and you have a more Deistic view of things, and you don’t think it’s the singular evil-man causing stuff to happen, but that it’s just the natural negative effect that wrongdoing/sin has on the world–doesn’t matter. Either view is valid, and the logic works out, either way. The things that Satan latches onto and the evil that he causes to happen are still triggered by certain countless trillions of little variables that we cannot see or understand. And the point of this whole post is that in the same way that even though Satan “put it into Judas’ heart to betray Jesus“, which caused the absolutely horrific crucifixion to occur which is the way of Salvation of all mankind, so is this true in YOUR life, today. Don’t you see? It doesn’t matter whether or not Satan is directly or indirectly causing the seemingly horrible things to happen in your life or not–the point is, if you’re a believing and faithful child of God, you can not only COUNT ON, but you can TAKE CONFIDENCE that the horrible things in your life that Satan causes, can and will end up for good.

So the next time you get to wondering about, “How in the world can this horrible thing I’m going through right now be any good?” Just remember this little story about Judas, Jesus, and Satan. This story basically tells us that the action that Satan took against Christ never “threw things off-course” in any way. As a matter of fact, it was a catalyst for freedom to occur. Remember that. Rememeber that in your own life. And take confidence in it.

As always, comments from everyone are welcome. I’d particularly be interested to see what

  • – some of my fellow skeptics and doubters,
  • – my agnostic/”opiate-of-the-masses”-quoting acquaintances,
  • – and my theologian acquaintances think of this post.

But honestly, I hope everyone can read it, understand the point, and I’d like to hear back from everyone.

God bless YOU.

–Travis J, 8-18-2011-8-19-2011

P.S. The title of this blog post is not meant to encourage you to go do evil, by the way. You have totally and complete missed the point if you think that. And shame on you, if so ^_^ .


Wither We Do, Wither We Don’t

Posted in : about life/the Christian faith,poems,stream of consciousness/random

You tap the soul out of the life,
Our joy we derive, it becomes strife.

I learned your ways, I must admit,
At my need, pull tools from your kit.

What am I saying–what is this tripe?
Our brains are soft, for picking, ripe.

Off your effects we cannot stave,
And our spirits become enslaved.

Though deep down you’re dark as night,
I can’t deny you still bring light.

You make me mad, you make me free,
Someone use the pin of honesty..

— Travis J


I'm very big into education, and my energies are devoted to inspiring this desire for education into other people--at home and abroad.

Travis J's web-design company: Travis J Consulting http://www.ktravisj.com