J i m P o n s
Well. People have called me that. In the ‘60s and ‘70s I was the bass player and singer with The Leaves, The Turtles and Frank Zappa's Mothers of Invention.
Yes. NFL Film and Video Director for 27 years with the New York Jets Football Club.
Yes. I have written an autobiography called Hard Core Love: Sex, Football and Rock and Roll in the Kingdom of God.
Yes. I have recently begun painting and have included some of my work here.
Son of God?
Of course. Arent we all?
A Far Country Boy?
Yes. It's a long story so I wrote a book about it.
The bible tells the story about a young boy who leaves his father's house and ventures into the far country to find his fortune. Instead he lives a life of wasteful extravagance which ultimately leads to his "coming to his senses" and returning home. That story was my story.
As a young boy I loved God but was never really sure that he loved me. I found the acceptance I needed in the world of entertainment. Just like the Prodigal Son in Luke 15 I left my father's house and lost myself in the Far Country of celebrity and acclaim. I knew those things weren't real but neither was the love of God. At least I could experience the fame and fortune. It was much more satisfying and I couldn't resist the temptation to indulge.
Meanwhile in my craving for love and acceptance I forgot who my father was - the only One who could truly satisfy it. I was getting by on the validation of my careers, my possessions and relationships with others who had the same unfulfilled need. When I finally came to my senses and saw the futility of it all I wanted to go home. But by then the separation had become too sustained and my guilt too great to overcome. I sank deeper into the illusion that I hoped could sustain me. Only when the illusion ended and I felt I was losing everything did my spirit awaken to the love of God. Only then did I come to an understanding of my true nature.
It was this sudden awakening that finally freed me from a life of addiction that had taken control of me. In one moment I was transformed by God's Hard Core Love, and the freedom Jesus promised was finally realized. I hadn't really been away from home at all. God had been in my heart the whole time. I only had to see it to experience it.
If ever there was a far country apart from the love of God I lived there. If ever there was an embodiment of a prodigal son I was him.
I am a Far Country Boy.
Read the whole story in my new autobiography published by Waterfront Press, Inc.