Tuesday, November 24, 2020

The Phoenix: AKA (The Twit is Still Tweeting)

update 12/30

“Speak what you think now in hard words, and to-morrow speak what to-morrow thinks in hard words again, though it contradict everything you said to-day.” Emerson

I 'raptured' out of twitter for a few weeks, taking on the moniker- Harpazo (grk to seize often translated rapture)

While praying about it.... I sooner felt like retreat... almost like the kid who got licked and took his ball home a quitter.

So... I'm back- I do have to be more disciplined in time- but I need to participate and encourage good things and stand up to the SJW bullies when I need to. 

I also have to have more courage... I often back out of a fight because I don't want to reflect badly on my employer... I still don't- but I am expressing my views... no one else!

So... disregard everything below...... but I keep it for the record....

 original content 11/24/20

“In the fall the war was always there, but we did not go to it anymore.” 
Ernest Hemingway, In Another Country

It has been a mild fall, I'm barely in a sweatshirt here right before Thanksgiving. Normally, the time change inflicts physical and psychological discomfort-  not only of darkness, but in dampness and north winds as well. Alabama winters aren't very inspiring.

But the sun is out and the sky has a brilliant columbian hue which is energizing, especially through my prescription Costa's. The winter blues, more nuanced in my mid 50's, haven't overtaken me yet. So this is actually a healthy time to write and even a healthier time to make my decisions more solid.

I have SO MUCH to be thankful for. My knee feels great. Covid had jacked it up to the point that I was convinced that knee replacement surgery would come sooner rather than later... but the intense pain left me as quickly as it came on. And after reading a medical journal about it, though we don't know much about this virus-weapon, I can testify that it has a special affinity for arthritic joints!

Because my knee is good, and I see more clearly, and the weather is just right... I will get in a brisk walk today, just before the sun sets... and I will be of a better state of mind to count continuous blessings... which are innumerable. 

But I am compelled, before doing so, to attempt to articulate my reasons for leaving twitter on Dec. 31.

And in doing so, I hope to make clear that I am not judging the service, nor anyone who continues to enjoy/use it, nor do I think that my leaving the twitterverse will have any measurable impact on the continuation of the service.....

The most interesting part of this post, is that I was close to making this decision years ago, but twitter increased the number of characters from 140 to 280, and I felt like I could say more and stay in the stream of culture and do my best to express a world and life view that is increasingly fading from public discourse. I started a twitter account in March of 2011 and will end it permanently on Dec. 31, 2020.

SO why?

I have been fascinated by those who have contacted me since I pinned the tweet about the decision who are thinking about the same thing.

First, this isn't really that big of a deal. I will still be 'tweeting' through the school athletics account, but it will be strictly information... re-tweeting articles, schedules, etc.

I will still keep my facebook account, instagram, and I have a parler account... but I don't think I will be going there much at all.

Though I am completely aware that ALL social media accounts are run by algorithms that use me as a product for their profit, I became acutely aware that twitter has become bolder and colder about what content they choose to tip the balance for and I recognized that I was already listed as incompatible with their world view. According to their norms, media elite will label me "insane and full of hate".

In some ways, I have to admire their HONESTY in the process... I'm continuing on Facebook who  PRETENDS to be fair. I also have a chance on FB to at least have MORE room/space to accurately clarify and appeal....and my 'network' on facebook is more open to verification- I see real people.

The biggest loss to my twitter feed is the GREAT network of high school coaches I have come to follow... but alas, I was addicted to your likes and approval as well. And I truly enjoyed the weekly sarcasm of the #oakislandcursers... will miss you guys as well!

Current State of Affairs..... NOT the Primary Reason for Leaving

The latest amalgamation of social media engineering is brilliantly vile and sinister. We tend to think of Marxism as a war of governments... no, it is a war of ideas.  Marxists want a global revolution where the economic and social constructs are completely eradicated and a new world order arises. There are Marxists out there, who don't even know they are Marxists....

The latest attack has been very effective.... the cancel culture and wide dissemination of identity politics has created the best environment for a global reset more than ever before in history.

Once you can create a multi-verse of oppressors and the oppressed... then the fronts of cultural wars are too numerous to effectively fight. It takes unity of mind and courageous souls to fight for a cause- you have to be willing to sacrifice to win... and a single sacrifice usually signals a retreat. I'm concerned the church has gotten distracted in the confusion and have chosen the wrong battlefield.

It saddens me to think that we have lost a major battle in the arena of epistemology... the justification of knowledge.

Back in 2004, I was introduced to the writings of John Frame. It took quite a while for me to 'catch up' to him, but before long, I was ready to tackle his book, "The Doctrine of the Knowledge of God". Page by page, I was undone and re-formed by the fact that humans must DEMAND powerful tools and methods by which we set the 'rules' of the justification of knowledge. This is the battle field that God Himself has enshrined by which obstacles to faith a removed by the processes of scientific investigation and logical discourse.

In this area, the Bible flourishes.... because you can't have a better theory for the existence of logic, law, language, love and liberty except through the lens of the historical Judeo-Christian worldview. People of faith INVENTED the mechanisms of science and philosophy... "in the beginning was the LOGOS" !

But something wicked took place in the secular and liberal academies.... rule changes, definition changes, and thought police took real human pain and elevated experience over evidence, emotion over reason, and 'applauded' savage cancel culture attacks, declaring that they were more authentic than civil discourse. I also understand, that this has always been an excuse to try to live 'unhindered' before the God of conscience and moral law (1 Peter 4).

So for 15 years, I have been trying to flesh out a way BACK to reasoned responses..."being ready to give a defense to anyone who asks".... only now to be told that my insistence to the formal rules of debate are invalid because they are inherently built on systematic racism of which I cannot refute... this systematic change has left me weaponless in the face of an army of insults and assault.

Time to change tactics....

By the way, there are many who misunderstand this by saying that I BELIEVED I could 'debate the way to faith' and that was never true... nor my intent. Apologetics is merely an attempt to remove obstacles..... only the Holy Spirit can engender true faith... and God will bring those to Himself without any effort on my part. My contending for Him is because I love Him and know that others who come to love Him will regret any time they spent outside of knowing Him! I want others to experience the freedom and love He lavishly pours out in grace and mercy!

So I have getting throttled, 'censored', and pounded by the enemies of evangelical Christianity. They have been successful in making me seemingly irrelevant to the conversation and my 'SERIOUS' tweets are trivial at best. The dominion of darkness continues the victory lap in Babylon (and will so until judgement day).

But that is no reason to leave..... not at all... in the end...

I am leaving because twitter hooked me.... I became a tweeter thinking I could offer myself as a source of inspiration and entertainment to my (millions) of followers LOL... a very high and grotesque view of myself... but instead, I became the proverbial rat in the cocaine test... consistently refreshing my feed to see what people thought of me... what was the next cool thing to know...

My wife began the conviction process, the Lord soon followed up with 'The Social Dilemma", and then twitter 'woke me up' when it started lecturing me about what to believe and not believe about very flat statements made in 280 characters or less.

I was having more interaction with my feed than I was with real human beings. Twitter avatars are single issue bomb throwers... human beings are more beautiful and complex.

Again, I have no qualms with anyone who wants to stay... 

But twitter has advanced the erosion of truth,  judgement by identity, and justice by mob rule. I can't lend myself to that erosion.

I also can't continue to be held captive in a world of likes... where I care more about what people think... than what God says.

My objective in 2021 is to spend more time with REAL people and continue to share and live out the gospel of Jesus Christ.

My final statement on this subject....

Psalm 34:1–8

[1] I will bless the LORD at all times;
his praise shall continually be in my mouth.
[2] My soul makes its boast in the LORD;
let the humble hear and be glad.
[3] Oh, magnify the LORD with me,
and let us exalt his name together!
[4] I sought the LORD, and he answered me
and delivered me from all my fears.
[5] Those who look to him are radiant,
and their faces shall never be ashamed.
[6] This poor man cried, and the LORD heard him
and saved him out of all his troubles.
[7] The angel of the LORD encamps
around those who fear him, and delivers them.
[8] Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good!
Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him! (ESV)

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