Naked and Afraid on T.V.

April Fools!

Breaking news! Donald Trump, the self-made billionaire and presidential candidate has walked up to the podium in front of millions and millions of people around the globe and announced, “The Emperor has no clothes.”

Now the world is completely aghast.

Most people already recognize who Donald J. Trump is. The brash billionaire made a fortune in real estate, authored many best selling books, and in the early 2000’s became an American reality T.V. sensation for making capitalism cool on national television. Hate it or love it, whether the show aired on Thursdays or Mondays, for several weeks and seasons lots of Americans, in all demographics around the country, including those who rarely watch T.V., much less reality T.V., tuned into NBC once a week to see what task “The Donald” had in-store for his remarkably talented candidates. At the end of the day contestants tried to form alliances and conspire against others before the dreaded “boardroom” though Trump and his associates would masterfully sift through their spin to zero in on who the problem person was and send him or her packing by the end of each episode. Trump’s wisdom defined true ambition in every episode for over a decade and was showered at NBC with ratings gold.

Trump was also a savvy and generous political campaign contributor. An endorsement from Trump was so highly sought after, in fact, that in early 2012 a lesser known primary candidate in a crowded herd (who eventually went on to become the party’s nominee) was quoted, while receiving Trump’s blessing at a press conference, as saying,

“There are some things that you just can’t imagine happening in your life. This is one of them.”

Three years later, some of the usual suspects were at it again and the ‘Club for Growth’ Super Pac thought they could squeeze Trump again for another buck in the name of ‘arbitraged democracy.’ The super pac reportedly solicited Mr. Trump for one million dollars which they would allocate towards smearing the record of whomever they wished in the next campaign cycle. Trump said “No Deal.” But “No” was apparently ‘no bueno.’ Considered a non-answer and typically received as “No” (until we twist your arm, threaten to smear you on T.V., cut ties and disavow you, or just plain strong-arm you) into saying “Yes” later on. You would think the builder of casinos would know that in the end, the house always wins.

Trump’s doubling-down on a “tell-all #Trump2016 crusade” especially gave the NBC chiefs a heart attack. A simple Trump factor of ‘golden ratings’ and ‘fantastic success record’ was too dangerous of leverage that it would screw up the perfected algorithms and modals the political eggheads had assured the kingpins at NBC of. A two part combination-punch of a Trump-less Apprentice, and a controlled detonation of an upcoming election seriously just disturbed all the peacocks enough to call Trump into a Pow-Wow. They tried to coerce and plead Trump into not running [for President]. The boys at the Top of the Rock explained that it had already been decided, by everyone in the know, and frankly “It [was about] Time.” So if it was rigged to begin with, they argued, why would a winner like Trump want to dive into a bloodbath election over another easy 15 million dollar paycheck to do a show that they had already renewed on NBC? The logic just didn’t add up. Why would Trump threaten to mess up a perfectly orchestrated coronation that DC handlers had concocted regardless of what any real expert paying attention would eventually see through.

Unfortuately, Trump doesn’t smoke peace-pipes or drink cool-aid. So NBC’s chiefs must have been so spooked by Trump, that they determined to hammer Trump into submission targeting Trump’s idiosyncratic weaknesses and electability. The word from the top was to just target optics. If they targeted Trump’s message as well they might be trapped into a sticky situation of educating the public that Trump is right on the money, as usual. If they were going to tame the bucking bronco everyone around the campfire was going to need to agree to wag-the-dog, align with #neverTrump, and chip in to a scorched-earth smear campaign to dump Donald D[Trump]f. Trump had them cornered on the issues, but this would be a battle of optics. NBC needed a compelling standard to which to critique every potential Trumpism by. So the call was made to ratchet up on a worn-out, draconian, zero-tolerance political correctness doctrine that had already sparked criticism from comedians like Jerry Seinfeld, calling it very “creepy,” because they thought PC is killing the laughter. Those who might have bucked at the new marching orders or screw it up royally would need to be asked to get off the bus, less they accidentally derail the whole operation. Because NBC was going to bet the farm on their version of apathetic legalism in order to provide everyone signing up to #stopTrump the cover they needed to go after Trump.

NBC’s ‘shock and awe’ on Trump could be witnessed on Morning Joe the day after Trump announced his candidacy on why “Donald Trump will #never be president”. Their next attack would be after Trump’s tough stance on building a wall between the United States and Mexico, as well as his position on illegal immigration (which the border patrol endorses). PR Wizards used fractions of hour long interviews and massive speeches to form “sound-bite ammo” to launch back at Trump wherever he went. NBC wasn’t going to mince words, people needed to know immediately “Trump, and those like him are no good racists and misogynistic.” Their proof? Over-the-top staged announcements by Univision saying they want to “completely sever ties” and “#dump Trump completely” over what he said. Then fired off another volley by putting the kabash on Trump’s Ms. USA pageant right where it would sting Trump the worst, in the ratings like real true-blue feminists.

These strange unilateral kamikaze maneuvers by NBC were simply based on what hired PR experts believed would work to spook Trump into getting cold feet and split-up and eradicate his support with the voters. In a month, however, the NBC political wizards & sages were flabbergasted by a scary phenomenon emerging in the raw data. Polls revealed despite their #neverTrump sabotage, Americans had enough and were pushing back telling pollsters, “You’re wrong. Trump is for us and we like him.” Trump’s poll numbers surged like a rocket. The wise men reasoned that optics wasn’t the draw, it’s his message of sounding off on the public’s real problems. That was enough for the suits to put on war paint and declare “Code Red” and publically “fire Trump” from NBC, cut all ties, and form a coalition of tribes to put a stop to the angry white man.

One of those recruited was the political mercenary group ‘Club for Growth,’ who still were “hurt” that Donald wouldn’t cough up the dough when they asked for it nicely, but the same people never even cared to reimburse Trump for a ruined carpet when he helped them to fund another loser’s demise. Thus it should be highly suspect that when these “morally questionable” consultants on K-Street decided to follow NBC’s lead to also attack Trump. They piled on hard with an whopping “flood” of negative advertising in Florida which only has pissed off the crock even more.

But it wasn’t just media moguls and professional hatchet men who Trump ‘snubbed’ on his way to the white house; last January before Trump even considered running for POTUS, Republicans apparently really wanted Trump to run for Governor of New York. Just like NBC & CFG, Trump refused them also. Trump’s persistent refusal to give-in has predictably prompted the exact same response from the RNC & DNC, as from the media & super pacs, which can only mean they too have been compromised. With some “conservatives” in Washington DC now handing Trump supporters the blackspot.

NBC, The mainstream media, CFG (and Super Pacs like them), competing candidates, pundits, talk-show hosts on both the right and the left, college professors, as well as Hollywood celebrities really don’t mind a regularly scheduled Donald on T.V., or when he loans them a quarter to play politics in the arcade, but #Trump2016 has compromised their credibility now more than ever. To not support Trump means being forced to defend a more dangerous doctrine than ISIS. And the public buying in to the ploy, are stuck into pledging their support to people who have no concept of reality and are endorsed by literal space cadets, over the master architect of the Art of the Deal. 

The press, in serious financial trouble, are choosing to pass up the good scoops in exchange for tabloid gossip in their opinion pages in order to play their readers into thinking Trump is some sort of “huckster extraordinaire who can’t sell himself as smart while acting so dumb.” It’s just too bad that they’ve already “spilled the beans” over two decades ago that Donald J. Trump is simply smarter than the rest of us. Millennials, who were in diapers when Trump published his iconic epitome on deal making, aren’t taught anymore of Trump’s consistent formula for success defined as; “hard work, thorough preparation, detailed knowledge, careful planning, tight organization, strong leadership, dogged persistence, controlled energy, good instincts and the genetic ability to deal.” Because the press refuses to be consistent with what they said in the past which is really, “Mr. Trump makes one believe for a moment in the American dream again.”  

Trump’s core message is so blunt it hurts: we gotta “switch” or “ditch.” While other candidates have boasted to the public about their “real achievements”, Trump and his close friends have been watching and consistently vocal that our country, along with the rest of the world, have navigated the good ship lollipop into the perfect storm with some extremely rough seas ahead.

The purveyor of the “Audacity doctrine” that claimed to, “not go ‘abroad in search of monsters to destroy’ (P. 280)” has also been completely compromised as well. Hordes of people in Syria, Iraq, Africa, and many more in the Middle East have already ditched their home countries because of said monsters which causes their home country to implode into political anarchy while they seek refuge in countries that are already broke. And now some of those refugees are struggling to assimilate to western values, because to assimilate would be a crime against humanity. These also are the people who want to setup shop on main st. with your money.

At over $19,000,000,000,000 in debt, our country is teetering on becoming broke ourselves. Dr. “O(h) no” seriously suggests that if we change the “placebo medicine” from NAFTA to TPP it will suddenly overhaul “the status quo” from the failed Clinton/Bush eras. His imperative to change? Former deals, he says, put our workers and businesses at a “competitive disadvantage” (lose) (even though we complain about it) by majorly lowering standards for workers (win) and pollute the environment (win) beyond what the US could legally allow at home. Rather than fix our faulty trade deals O & those who agree with TPP instead want America to swallow a sugar coated suicide pill. Because TPP, just like NAFTA, creates a legal binding framework for any ‘private investor’ (regardless of nationality) to systematically dismantle both State & National laws until we have something like a global corporatocracy.

We don’t want that, but talking heads on T.V. who are already compromised cannot report on Trump’s New Deal, except for a painfully small minority. That’s because Trump’s fix doesn’t start with policy, it starts with setting up a tent. On the first episode of Season 6 of the Apprentice, Trump completely outsmarted some of most brilliant and famous people by asking them to set up two tents. In that one exercise those brilliant minds collapsed into chaos until two people emerged that could band everyone together and setup those tents. They became “project managers” of an equal two party system that became competitive, capitalistic, and democratic with accountable leaders who had one goal to complete each week or else suffer sleeping in the tent, or worse get fired for not doing their job in the boardroom. 

Nobody has been more hurt and more deceived than the people who are basing their opinions on what compromised biased people tell them. Remember #nevertrump is just in a publicity battle with Trump because they feel if he wins, they’ll be dumped by the viewing public. If you feel that everyday on T.V. they’re showing you another car wreck, just remember how you feel when you sit behind all those rubber-neckers on the highway. Trump hurt their feelings a little bit and they’ve decided to go nuclear on him for it.

So Happy April Fools!

Just wanted you to know, you’ve been duped.

-r3d

 

 

 

31st Birthday picture!

via Instagram http://ift.tt/1RBxmBu
 

The first word in Genesis

———-

Here’s just a review of what was presented in the video:

1: This is the aleph-bet (Alphabet) of Hebrew:

The Hebrew Aleph-Beyt or Alphabet

 2: This chart shows the origins and meanings of the letters.

3: Take a look at the text…

Gen. 1:1: In the beginning God created the Heavens and the Earth… (NIV, NLT, NASB link)

בראשית ברא אלהים את השמים ואת הארץ

haarez      v’et    hashamayim et    elohim       bara     bereshit     [<- This way]

The Earth  and   The heavens        God        created  In beginning [lit]

Take a look at the first word of the sentence: bereshit (pronounced: bə-rê-šîṯ)

Using our chart it breaks down

ב – (Bet, Beyt) Tent; Family, House, In

ר – (Resh) Head (of a man); first, top, beginning

*Together בר = bar… or tent-first = “the head of the tent” also means “son” or “son of” (link)

ברא or “b’ra” also means as a noun: son or child; as a verb: to create (which is the next word in Gen 1:1 “bara” or “b’ra”)

*So in the very first three letters we derive the words “son”; “son of”; or “to create” as if saying “the son, creates”

א – Aleph at the end of ברא means Strong, Power, Leader! It is the first letter in the hebrew alphabet and the first letter in the general word for God: אל  – el 

In hebrew it’s not a far stretch to say that Aleph is the symbol or mark for God. Silent, but powerful and mighty. 

ש – (Shin) Two front teeth; Sharp, Press, Eat, Two

The image is of one “devouring”, “eating, or “destroying”

י – (Yud, Yod) Arm and closed hand; Work, Throw, Worship

The image is of “one’s own work” or workmanship.

ת – (Taw) Crossed sticks, “+”; Mark, sign, signal, monument

The image is of putting one’s mark on something or displaying a signal. Note the word picture is of crossed sticks… 十

Ok let’s stand back and look at the word pictures put together:

Bar-A(leph) Shi(n) y(ud) t(aw) = The son (leader; one who creates)/ devours (the)/ their own workmanship / (with a) mark of crossed sticks.

Bereshit – The son’s workmanship destroyed on a cross = “In (the) Beginning…”

Incredible!

and this is how the bible begins…

Credit goes to late night surfing on youtube and landing on the not viewed so much, but informative: “My dutch uncle” John Kostik with his video series Jesus in Genesis. The video above is one of a series he started going over the first sentence in the Bible. I recommend if you’re interested in this sort of thing to take a look at his videos…

-R3d

 

Sand storm subsided and this is the view from our hotel. You can see two Mosque minnoets and a water park :)

via Instagram http://ift.tt/1MjNa8R
 

Chapter 2: The Magnitude of the Sacrifice

In continuing on from the previous post titled, “What Are the Unknown Knowns” I concluded that,

“In re-learning basic concepts of freedom we can exercise that knowledge for our benefit, rather than continually choosing to forget it. Taking a stand on something is not the same as martyrdom, but it takes a similar type of courage to stand up to something you know to be wrong.”

This was based upon my assessment that:

“What is left is a community where the LOUDEST VOICE is allowed to present absurdities, and because they are LOUD and because they are accomplished in their YELLING, they are lauded as “good” by “the institution”.”

Here’s my thought,

In such a progressive-minded society we still have rules governing our society. Which are being regarded more and more like constrictive edges of a paper keeping the proliferating words of the law from running off the page into oblivion. However, in order to grant more freedom of access to those in the margins of our society we have turned the table completely over, re-written the map, and have decided to follow a course of action that ties up our democracy with arguments equivalent to redefining the size of that paper, rather then focus on how these new emerging problems can be resolved in our pre-existing free democracy.

“Eight and a half by eleven or fight!”

Some scary comments I’ve read from the internet are things like,

“Joshua, I think that means you’d need to contemplate the possibility that the country is mentally ill and needs serious psychotherapy.”

“It’s just hard for me to imagine that our dear founding fathers would be like, “yeah cool — keep that bit about the right to bear arms EXACTLY as it is” if they saw the news these days.”

Wait a sec…

Could we, the 21st century “we the people”, write and agree upon a constitution today as the 18th century “We The People” actually did?, and then be so committed to it that we would sacrifice everything to protect it?

And would that constitution continue to serve “to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity…”?

I’ve heard “yes” and “yes”, but the founding fathers weren’t exactly so sure.

Our forefathers were not philosophical gods, but rational thinking men with big issues to solve like us.

You see, WE DO KNOW what our forefathers thought when they were contemplating the formation of our Union, and what they thought in writing the constitution. We know it, because they told us as much in their letters and individual writings.

(If you are curious where to start learning perhaps you should click here. )

What they thought was prolific and hopeful but also riddled with concern over the protection of State’s rights verses National rights.

In their writings;

  • They considered trade between individual states and trade between states and other countries and what the role of federal government would be if a country had a trade dispute with a state. Or if a state had a trade dispute with another state.
  • They debated how a uniform system in commercial relations would be necessary to their common interest and their permanent harmony, and the lengths to which the federal government should involve itself;
  • They wrestled with how to report to the several States such an act, “The Constitution” and whether if this union they formed would unanimously be ratified by the states, or fall short and insight more rebellion.

One the biggest surprises in educating myself about the founding fathers and the constitution was this revealing passage I found in a letter written on September 17, 1787 before the presentation of the constitution to the general public by George Washington,

“It is obviously impracticable in the Federal Government of these States to secure all rights of independent sovereignty to each, and yet provide for the interest and safety of all. Individuals entering into society must give up a share of liberty to preserve the rest. The magnitude of the sacrifice must depend as well on situation and circumstance, as on the object to be obtained. It is at all times difficult to draw with precision the line between those rights which must be surrendered, and those which may be preserved; and, on the present occasion, this difficulty was increased by a difference among the several States as to their situation, extent, habits, and particular interests.”

I wrestle with this, as I’m sure Washington did. In our present age we are rushing to try and bring opportunity to the disenfranchised or marginalised group, without requiring from them to give up a share of their liberty, but expecting that the government will provide for the interest and safety of all [sic]. And when It doesn’t work, somehow we feel like we have the right to become severely cynical of the process — when the whole time our founding fathers knew all this in advance and decided anyway to setup a system in hopes that “the democratic solution” and time would iron out differences between people.

When Washington states that it is difficult to draw with precision the line between those rights which must be surrendered, and those which may be preserved [sic] there is an point here that in order for this system to work not everyone is going to win what they want. However, they will secure what they need, and perhaps just enough to even thrive.

Is this sacrifice acceptable?

Can we agree on this one point, that perhaps… Perhaps… we can sacrifice and compromise on a few issues in order to preserve the Union from invasion or dissolvement?

Or must we tarry on endlessly, forgoing freedoms we really should protect, gaining some we really didn’t need, all in order to forge a “perfect paradoxical union” in which everyone gets their own cake and eats it too?

Perhaps for the privilege of freedom, we might yield a few inches before we’ve lose miles.

Thanks for reading, stay tuned for Chapter 3

 

The Greatest Mystery on Earth!

120618_otl_samandmax_mysteryvortex

Come everyone to the revealing of the GREATEST MYSTERY ON EARTH.

 

 

Who: YOU! Of course… It’s all about the mystery about you and them…

What: The one time, greatest mystery ever to be revealed in all of Earth’s human history!

Where: Right where you are sitting, standing, doing, reading, living, and or being in.

When: Click the link at the bottom to find out.

Just read what people are saying about “The Mystery”:

“I do not want you to be ignorant of this mystery, brothers and sisters, so that you may not be conceited…”

WOW!

“We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed—”

SPECTACULAR!

“He made known to us the mystery … to his good pleasure”

HOW FASCINATING!

Yes friends! you too have a once and a lifetime opportunity to see the mystery! Keep reading to learn about the mystery.

“In reading this, then, you will be able to understand my insight into the mystery…”

TREMENDOUS!

“This is a profound mystery—”

UNFATHOMABLE!

“…whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery”

DIVINE!

“the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed…”

SUPER!

“My goal is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery”

UNIMAGINABLE!

“Beyond all question, the mystery from which true godliness springs is great”

CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT THE MYSTERY!

 

What are the Unknown Knowns?

The cycle of knowledge flows one way.

First one starts in complete ignorance that something exists.

Once they are exposed to that something existing

they gain awareness of it and can never go back to a state of ignorance again.

——>—>–>–>—“Ignorance”–>–>—>—->–v

|                                       Cycle of                                                 |

|                                   Knowledge                                             |

<–<—–<——“Awareness”——<——<—–<–

Five months after September 11, 2001, the United States Defence Dept. had unconfirmed reports that Iraq might be linked to a cache of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) and that perhaps there was a conspiracy to use those WMDs against us.

The U.S. Department of Defence held a press conference to announce the news, however when questioned about the reports lacking any hard evidence Secretary of Defence Donald Rumsfeld replied,

“Reports that say that something hasn’t happened are always interesting to me, because as we know,

there are known knowns;

                     there are things we know we know.

                                           We also know there are known unknowns;

                                                                    that is to say we know there are some things we do not know.

                                                                                   But there are also unknown unknowns — the ones we don’t know we don’t know…”

To summerize,

‘where we are’…………………… O.o? in the cycle of knowledge determines our reaction to it.

But are there such things as “unknown knowns?” and what would our reaction to those be?

Prepared to be dazzled.

Unknown Knowns could fit in to the category of Unknown Unknowns,

if only we say that we are choosing to forget.

However, in the cycle of knowledge: to choose to forget an experience you have had, like it never happened, defies all human logic and reason. < . _ . > “y?”

At times, negative conditions present themselves in which it would be better for one to forget an experience, than to remember it.

                      Yet, we understand that when we do that, we are being illogical.

Yet, it is precisely the fact that because we are being illogical,                          that when we are asked if we are “aware” of something                                         we should know, we go further from illogical to                                                           irrational deciding whether it is advantageous for us to                                             lie and say that “we are not aware of it,” or take           responsibility and tell the truth saying, “We are aware of       it”, or we can say and do absolutely nothing.

After several thousand years in our divine wisdom of cycling through knowledge humans have actually just arrived at the beginning of knowledge, perplexed at

what to think,

                           what to say,

                                                   what to do,

                                                                         and what to believe.

Ok then… While our illogical and irrational behaviour is understandable, it may not be ethical. Illogically, however, one argues that everything in this world is not necessarily contained in one predefined ethical box.

Every box, or “paradigm”,“worldview”, “perception”, “reality”, etc. we have deconstructed.

New boxes, taken from old box designs (which the authors wholeheartedly reject), exist in relative limbo.

… – – –

… – – – …

SOS

What is left is a community where the LOUDEST VOICE is allowed to present absurdities, and because they are LOUD and because they are accomplished in their YELLING, they are lauded as “good” by “the institution”.

And because “good” is really just subjective to the institution who employ the LOUD VOICE, and ask the LOUD VOICE for their opinion, the LOUD VOICE becomes protected by the institution against any and all who would try and critique the LOUD VOICE.

This of course is not “good”, not “Evil”, but definitely “bad.”

You see,

“all experience has shown, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Institution, and to provide new Guards for their future security.” (10 points to you if you know this from somewhere.)

This might be radical thinking, but it is freedom-minded thinking. John Hancock, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, Samuel Adams, and other likeminded people all thought similarly.

We are supposed to right ourselves by abolishing the forms to which we are accustomed, but we do not because we think these evils aren’t evil (i mean what is evil anyway?), and even if they were evil they are at least sufferable.

But they are not.

not what? a knot? wait naughty? Er. What? 

They are not sufferable, because why suffer when one can protest?

The point at which something becomes insufferable is when one person, one person challenges the institution to take action against the LOUD VOICE. If the institution defends the LOUD VOICE without any investigation, when it claims to be free and independent, then it is corrupt.

This is paramount to freedom because without this basic understanding,

a person’s voice,

                                                          a person’s opinion,

                                                                                                                        a person’s vote

is worthless and meaningless.

It is despotism and tyranny.

God’s greatest gift to humanity is our freedom to realise we are in fact free and from that freedom we can create an independent free society of free thinkers

                                                                   if we want to.

This is something that I KNOW.

I have not forgot it,

this is a known-known and a line in the sand one may call “Truth.”

It has taken me years to get to this conclusion that this is something that I know to be fact, but it seems that others either do not know it, or they used to know it and chose to forget it.

In other words, “freedom-minded thinking” is one of those UNKNOWN KNOWNs.

There is one and only one course of action for unknown knowns such as this…

They must be re-learned into the known-(never-to-be-forgotten)-known category.

In re-learning basic concepts of freedom we can exercise that knowledge for our benefit, rather than continually choosing to forget it. Taking a stand on something is not the same as martyrdom, but it takes a similar type of courage to stand up to something you know to be wrong.

This courage is in all of us,

          it is ordained by God,

                   and through it we gain strength and wisdom. Small problems no longer grow into big problems, ignorance ceases to become stupidity.

This is not complicated, but common-sense regardless of the complexity of one’s situation.

Hugs!

~R3d

 

Don’t be a show-off

Purpose: To Show boys the folly of pride.

Items needed: A box with a large mirror in it.
Story:
 
Many years ago, Jim, a young man noted for his physical strength, was challenged by a bully. “I’ll bet ten dollars,” taunted the bully, “that you can’t lift the side of my wagon until the wheel clears the ground.” Jim politely refused the challenge. Many of his friends were disappointed in him.
Sometime later while on his way home, Jim saw one of his friends in need. A wagon wheel was broken, and the man was trying to pry up the wagon with a pole to remove the wheel. Promptly Jim lifted the wagon, and the man easily slipped off the wheel.
“Jim, I don’t understand,” the man said. “A while ago you wouldn’t accept a challenge of strength, and now you use your muscles without being asked.”
Jim replied, “I don’t believe God gave me a strong body just to show off.”
We too should not be tempted by pride. Whatever we have, whether physical strength, good looks, material possessions, pleasing personality, or deep spirituality, it is given us to use to glorify God.
ceremony: Fellows would you like to see what can be your greatest enemy? You can, by looking into this box. (After boys have seen themselves in the mirror say:) Yes, fellows, if we are filled with pride, we ourselves can be our greatest enemy. Now let’s bow our heads, and pray that God will help us not to be “show-offs.”
Abide in Jesus….
 

Out of post-modernity to post-perspectivism!

Doing research and I came up with this quote from my Systematic Theology textbook.

“One may hold the view that power makes truth, so if one is able to assert one’s view and have that assertion go unchallenged, that person should simply go ahead and do so.”
“A more common explanation is that one is simply so unable to escape one’s own perspective as to be incapable of recognising that it is just that, a perspective. In other words, one’s own conditioning (or rearing) is so complete that it shields one from that recognition that one is not working from a neutral viewpoint.”
So then what is the logical solution?
Post-perspectivism:
“Taking seriously the reality of *perspectivism, but going beyond it.”
*That is: biases
But this is only possible to do with oneself… if one is willing to listen to another…
“Any attempt to establish one view as superior to another must either assume some standpoint or neutral perspective, or will ultimately reduce to the current world opinion that POWER establishes TRUTH, which is either force or manipulation.”
So that leaves us with the fact that if we don’t desire to use force, nor manipulation to fight our cause, then our only option is to remain silent and wait until the other person opens up to listen to an alternative view point.
As if that seems like any resolution at all…
~R3d
 

Good Discipleship begins with Followship.

Opening Prayer:
“Heavenly father we pray that today’s message will inspire youth to strive to become better followers of Christ by working on Christian followship. Guide them through the Holy Spirit to show them that followship is not only more important to becoming closer to you, but it’s what you’ve taught us to strive for in your Holy Word. We pray this in Jesus’ name… Amen.”
Greetings! !

Today I want to talk about the differences between leadership and followship. Many of you have heard of leadership. It is the cornerstone on which our modern society tells us we should all strive for. Google “Leadership” and you will find endless articles describing 10 point leadership plans, or 5 keys to success in leadership, or biographies of famous people who started out with nothing but led themselves to unimaginable success. Our society is obsessed with Leadership, or the lack of, in the media or on the internet and yet many of us feel inadequate as leaders.

In school, some of you may have thought, “if only I was a better leader, I could lead my team/club/class/etc. to certain success and become a hero.” Or at work, some of you may have thought, “if only I had better leadership skills to know what to do next, I could lead my project team to certain success and be a company hero, perhaps even get an upgrade!” Or at home, some of you may have thought, “If only I knew how to lead my family better, we wouldn’t be in this rut that we’re in.” Leadership skills, we’re told by our best friends, t.v. commentators, or great men we look up too, are essential to success at whatever we do. It’s paramount to our sense of independence and self worth, but is that all really true? Are leadership skills the key everything even including success in our faith in Christ as well? The truth may be more surprising than you think.

Deny yourself, Take up your cross, and Follow me!
In the Gospel of Mark, towards the end of chapter 8, Jesus and his disciples were headed towards the villages around Caesarea Philippi when Jesus began to tell them of his deadly fate at the hands of the elders, chief priests, and teachers of the law and that eventually the Son of Man would die (vs. 8:31). One of his disciples, Peter, took Jesus aside and rebuked him for saying such things, but Jesus responded to Peter saying, “Out of my sight, Satan!… You do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men.” This prompted Jesus to tell a gathering crowd this, “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.”

Good Discipleship begins with Followship.

What is Jesus telling us to do here? Sometimes I think it’s easier to relate to Peter here then to listen to Jesus. Peter did what most of us probably would do when our leader, our hero, starts telling us some terrible news that we feel uncomfortable listening too. Really, when I read that Peter took Jesus aside to rebuke him I view Peter stepping up as the “PC (Political Correctness) Police” would do today. But Jesus’ message is firm: to go after Jesus means to follow Jesus. He’s asking us to trust Him and the only way to trust him is to deny what you think is important, take up that burden daily, and follow him to the end. This is the core of Jesus’ message a!nd the point of followship.

Blindly following Jesus is not Followship.

Often followship gets confused with the idea of “blind following Jesus without any critical thinking.” Jesus is not asking us to blindly follow him, rather he’s asking us to do something much deeper. At the last supper Jesus again tells his disciples that he is going away. Many of them are distraught at this news because if their leader is going away, then who will lead them? Or more importantly, if Jesus is asking them to follow him, how can they follow somebody who has left them? Jesus answers them in John 16:5 when he says, “Now I am going to him who sent me, yet none of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ Because I have said these things, you are filled with grief. But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you.” Then later on Jesus tells us that the Counselor is the ‘Spirit of Truth’, He says, “But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.” (Jn. 16:13) Followship is the skill Jesus is teaching to his disciples so that when they receive the Holy Spirit they are fully equipped to lean on the council of the Spirit, rather than the person of Christ, when they go out into the world and preach the Gospel of salvation.

The First steps to Followship
Followship is more than just ‘following Christ’, it is the crucial skill we must develop to hear and understand the wise council from the Counselor that Jesus has sent us. Fully developed, a disciple who excels at Followship doesn’t look like someone who excels at Leadership, but perhaps is more of a leader than any leader we know today. In light of Jesus’ words in Mark 8:34-35, Followship skills are dealing with how we should be constantly acting. For example:

Deny yourself: A first step to denying yourself might be to evaluate how you are making judgements in your daily life. We might have heard it said before, “Do not judge, or you too will be judged” (Matt. 7) but Jesus gives us some clear examples following that verse on how we should properly judge. Followship is applying Jesus’ advice on judgement, over our own tendencies to make snap judgements. Understand that this careful self-evaluation is hardly ‘following Jesus blindly,’ but thinking about what are ‘right judgements’ verses ‘wrong judgements’, studying carefully what Jesus’ advice is, and then praying for the Holy Spirit’s advice on what is the right way to judge.

Take up your cross: All of us have experienced hardships, or have had to make tough decisions before. We can remember the events leading up to that decision, how we made that decision, and the outcome of that decision. In the face of a hard decision you may be up against now, a good first step towards taking up your cross would be to seek out from your own past, or from the experiences of people older and wiser than you, what decisions you or they have made that were good decisions, and what decisions were bad. Studying the scriptures and praying for Holy Spirit’s advice on what to do in light of past experience, advice from others, and what is generally “the right thing to do” (even if it means more hardship for you) is developing your followship skill of taking up your cross. In the Bible, Paul in 2 Corinthians 6:3-13 is a good example of this.!

Follow me: Following Christ really means relinquishing the need to lead. Ultimately, eternity is at stake and Jesus, from the beginning of time, to his ministry on Earth, to time everlasting is leading us to a better future with him, if we allow Him. When we start to think we know best for ourselves because we’re either educated or successful at what we’re doing, we begin to lose sight of following Jesus and things will eventually fall apart. Therefore, successful Followship is much more tedious and complex a skill then successful leadership, because it requires us to submit to the instructions Christ gave us, especially ones we may not agree with.

In the days and weeks ahead it would be good to mentally jot down what you think “Followship” means for your life. Perhaps you will realise you have been too focused on leadership, and the Holy Spirit, our Counselor, has been trying to teach you Followship instead. For some of you, you have been followers of Christ for a long time, but are unsure where to go in your faith. Now would be a good time to check in with Jesus, through His word, and ask the Holy Spirit what you could be doing better. If you’re not a follower of Jesus, I would encourage you to think back on your past experiences, your successes and failures, and where you’re headed now. If you’re feeling overwhelmed because you think you lack leadership, perhaps it’s because it’s time to follow for awhile. For you I would encourage you just to pick up a bible and start reading through Matthew, ask yourself if following Jesus makes more sense than going it alone. You may discover something about yourself you’ve never thought to ask.

Blessings on your journey through life, let’s pray: “Jesus please help us to learn and excel at followship of you in our lives. Help us to understand that our need for success sometimes blinds us from our duty to follow your precious instructions for a righteous and fulfilling life with you. We pray that in the days and weeks ahead, in our meditation over these scriptures and this message, you would show us in our lives how we may excel at following you over ourselves. We pray this oh Lord in your Holy name… Amen.