Smartphones and tablets are amazing, providing information at our fingertips for nearly everything. Paper maps and memory were replaced by a GPS, pencil and paper by calculators, phone books and other memorized numbers by contact lists, and face-to-face people contact by Zoom. Everything is shorter; texts, calls, snapchats, and six-second tik-tok’s. All good news for our fast-paced instant gratification society – but the victim is a shrunken, non-thinking, garbage-filled brain. It pains me that I have to explain, Why I write Longgg Stories.
I used to call them blogs but I wasted money I wish I could get back on a blog writing course that ruined every thought I had on writing. Somewhere in-between realizing a Bible-based writer trying to make money off of sucked-in followers, conforming to the new writing rules of 144-character texts and <1,000-word blogs, and losing most of my readers when Facebook bait-and-switched every writer – I got enlightened. Let’s say it was from above. I vowed not to further the contribution of dumbness to people.
For the 7 people that read my content and stop after the first section, SURPRISE! My topics go beyond the body, soul, mind and delve into the spiritual side when you go into the brave spiritual world I call Joe’s Portico. Duh, in order to do two topics it takes a few more than 1,000 more words. I used to apologize, sorry not anymore. The theme of providing mental health-related information from psychology, science, and educational level or finance world is of value for all. It is also for the closed-minded Christian that dare not let their eyes see anything of ‘the world.’ Make it to part II and I’ll pinpoint though how we’re being tricked by brain-numbing tactics that we all need to be aware of.
For all to review is a must-see Netflix documentary on how social media sites and the FAANG’s are controlling what we see and hear. Catch the trailer for the info here. The trailer is only 2 minutes long, just enough for the short attention span generations, but watching the whole is an eye-opener. It is important to open our eyes that Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix, Google, Gate’s Microsoft, and others while doubling their profits during the ‘pandemic,’ have systematically taken over the minds of the naive. I am not making up conspiracy theories, it is factual, see it for yourself. Start reading more full stories and wake up to reality.
A while back I noticed my own mind had lost its sharpness and clarity and oft went into a foggy state. I would get a headache after reading a few paragraphs and drift off. Does anyone else notice this? I realized the new habits I had from scroll, scroll, scroll on social media, and short texting all day were killing my ability to think clearly and process words and thoughts well. Does anyone else notice how it seems many children and young adults have limited communication skills and cannot make a decision for themselves? How many diagnoses of kids you know have ADD, ADHD, the former Aspbergers, or Autism, or just plain can’t pay attention? How many adults suffer from the brain disorders of Dementia, Alzheimer’s, and FTD?
While there are many other contributing factors to brain dysfunction (eating habits, air & outside toxins, toxins in processed foods, radiation, prescribed medicines etc..) it is important to understand that not using our brains for what used to be common functions requires confronting and even exercising our brain in other ways.
I found my numbers-crunching ability was fading (and no it was not just getting older). So I worked on gaining the ability back by pro-actively practicing math in my brain. As an example, I was shopping at the grocery and did a double-take on a bogo sale for organic chicken by the pound. What a ‘great deal’ (at least back then before this hyper-inflation kicked in) to get the special-priced chicken at $7.49 a pound cut in half. In my head, I quickly calculated it was $3.74 1/2 cents a pound. But, right next to it was the exact same meat. It was not on sale, no bogo, no bright orange sticker – for $3.19 a pound. I examined the packages to see if all was the same and asked the woman if my eyes were seeing it wrong. As others grabbed the bogo meat without thinking twice I asked her again. She said we just price things the way they tell us. I don’t think she could tell it was a rip-off or maybe she just didn’t care they were fooling people. It became obvious to me they jacked up the price of the meat for the special price to get people to pay more for the ‘special.’
As long as people succumb to not using the brains God gave them, the more gullible and easily fooled they become. It is time to start thinking again! It is not too late to start exercising our brains, dump out the dung, and rewire what has been sabotaged.
Every story/blog I write contains multiple links. I add in links to external articles, online books, videos, music, and more. How many of you clicked on the earlier trailer? You do not need to answer, probably zero, as the stats I see on my webpage say less than 95% of the links I include in every blog are accessed. Personally, I have read or watched every single link and multiple ones before picking one that best fits this audience. In the part II section, I often include the link to full sections of Bible verses. How do you know I am not making this stuff up like the grocery stores that rip you off with their false sales? Or do you even care? Why do we believe what MSM says like robots?
I provide all the data en masse to not only provide information to educate and help everyone increase knowledge but to help with brain exercise. I dream of people who can’t get to sleep reading one of my stories on their smartpad and going down rabbit holes into external clicks until they fall asleep drooling on their pillows. The goal is to contribute to rewiring to full capacity every brain with positive information to make the world a better place. God knows we need it. I do so because it has worked well for many and I feel it is my obligation to pay it forward to others.
For most of 2018-2021 I was involved in counseling men and women between the ages of 16-25. I was astonished at how many could not carry on a conversation let alone read and write with clarity. I put together easy-to-understand classes to help the 10% that wanted to be better. It was rewarding but also frustrating to see so many lacking the basic understanding of life. So I researched to see what is causing this brain dysfunction (aside from the obvious that many were addicted to brain-cell killing habits)
On one of my rabbit hole searches, I validated my findings that reading is a crucial exercise for our brains both in the early development stages all the way through our gray days. You can read it all here. But this time do me a favor and wait until you’ve read the cliff not version and part II too.
Nowadays people can barely watch a 6-second video or refuse to respond to a text longer than 3 sentences because it is too much for their brains to handle. An avid reader is now one who clicks on articles from online magazines or shorts written to try to get someone to buy a book or attend a seminar. We have been duped to not memorize road names and directions and not only allow a GPS to tell us where to go, but we’ve abandoned all thinking and succumbed to words from the media and memes to educate us. It is all part of the dumbing down of mankind.
Aside from gaining knowledge – Science has determined that reading benefits your brain in many measurable ways. Reading Rewires Your Brain. Reading regularly and extendedly physically changes your brain’s form and function. I quote , “One study looked at 31 adults who started reading at an early age, 22 individuals who learned to read as adults, and ten people who were illiterate. The scientists used functional magnetic resonance imaging scans to measure and compare brain function of the participants as they responded to oral language, written language, and visual tasks.
In readers, the occipital lobe, the visual processing center of the brain, was more developed. This means that the readers could process visual information more efficiently. This brain trait could translate into enhanced imagination and creativity skills as well as being able to visualize the future better for decision-making and planning. The readers’ parietal lobes were also strengthened. The parietal lobe turns letters into words and words into thoughts. It’s essential to writing and reading comprehension.” The article adds:
Seven Ways Reading Benefits Your Brain
- Mental Stimulation
- Stress Reduction
- Enhanced Social Skills
- Vocabulary Expansion
- Memory Improvement
- Improved Brain Connectivity and Function
- Better Sleep
Imagine all the great stimulating things you just did for your physical brain which is part of your body, soul, and mind. They are important components of our makeup. Having all our parts in harmony prevents us from the debilitating brain disorders that are plaguing multiple generations here and across the world. But, IF I left out the side of what reading, that is reading more than just romance novels or sports biographies, accomplishes within the spirit portion of our makeup – I would be remorse.
Like usual, extend that brain a little further and head into the Portico. Otherwise, I hope you have gained something to help your brain ‘rewire’ and motivate you to read beyond 144 characters at a time.
Please don’t go away yet! Hit that red button for more. If this is your first time visiting Average Joe’s Portico, every post is written in two parts. You have just read the portion challenging the mind, body, and soul. In The Portico, I seek to tap into your spiritual side, but only IF YOU DARE. Tap the Red Line Below to read the Part 2 Spiritual side of the story. (For an explanation of my madness – read the ‘Do You Dare’ Tab)
If You Dare, Click to Enter Into Joe's Portico (To See Part II of This Story)
Nehemiah is one of the best books of the Bible to evaluate how to function in a world where the government and more has escalated its assaults on people. The world is infuriated at Vladimir Putin for attacking Ukraine. In reality though, aside from the atrocity of bombing and killing people, it is actually the next step of how freedom’s across the globe have slowly but surely eroded. At the end of rebuilding walls that were blown up, Nehemiah called on Ezrah the Scribe (aka writer) to read aloud from the books of Moses.
“They read from the Book of the Law of God and clearly explained the meaning of what was being read, helping the people understand each passage.” Nehemiah 8:8 NLT
As a scribe, he not only read the word but provided a clear explanation for ALL the people to understand it. The NKJV worded it slightly different
“So they read distinctly from the book, in the Law of God; and they gave the sense, and helped them to understand the reading.”
It is important to make sure our brains are “given sense“ in all matters, especially the Bible. In your next reading, I challenge you to read all of Nehemiah and closely examine how throughout the book Nehemiah often stopped the people from their routines to thoroughly explain what was going on both in the real world and what God was communicating to him on behalf of the people. In chapter four we see that the people who had taken control of the lives of the Jews were not happy when Nehemiah showed up and helped restore their lives back to freedom. They had dumbed them down completely and then destroyed their cities on top of it. Here is what one of them had to say:
4:1-2 “But when Sanballat heard that we were rebuilding the wall, he became furious, completely enraged, and he ridiculed the Jews. 2 He spoke before his brothers and the army of Samaria, “What are these feeble Jews doing?“
The feeble dumb and numbed brains of the people had woken up to what was happening. It was similar to how the Pharisees and ironically Jewish leaders responded to Jesus who had wanted to open the door for all people to have access to a one-on-one relationship with God. It infuriated the high priests. They and most leaders prefer to keep people in the dark so they can maintain control over them.
Another great chapter to read is John 7, one excerpt describes how Jesus was offering salvation and the power of the Holy Spirit to anyone and everyone: “Anyone who is thirsty may come to me! Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from his heart. When he said “living water,” he was speaking of the Spirit, who would be given to everyone believing in him. John 7:37-39
Verse 40 tells us that this caused a great division amongst the people. Translated the average Joe’s/Jo’s were delighted with the great news Jesus delivered to their brains. Those in power were infuriated and wanted him censored from Facebook and Twitter, er actually way worse, they wanted Him killed. Freedom is taken away via wars like we are seeing in Ukraine at the time of this writing. Undoubtedly it is horrible. But it starts with the infiltration of socialism and eventual communism to keep all under the palm of those in control. It is where it starts and ends. It is hard to imagine we are seeing it right under our own numb minds, yet some act surprised.
Back to Sanballat and his cronies. They had already bombed the people’s protective walls which was the only obvious thing. So Nehemiah educated the people on how they were being duped once again and pulled them back together to rebuild the wall. They had been separated from family and friends, many moved away, like what is happening directly in Ukraine. But subtly it had been happening before the walls came down. Small ways like putting masks on people furthering their inability to communicate and finding ways to separate people by forcing them to stay home and away from other people. Work-at-home and church via zoom may seem like a good thing, but socially it is a brain killer and depression cause for many.
Thankfully the Jewish people had a strong and wise leader in the Nehemiah. The Sanballat hater group tried everything to stop them with both inside and outside disturbances. One of their ploys was creating distractions to get people off of the task at hand, which in this case was rebuilding their wall and re-establishing their freedom and protection. Verse 4:15 describes the success which came from Nehemiah’s working via the plans of God’s wisdom, and God’s intervention — ” Now when our enemies heard that we knew about their plot against us, and that God had frustrated their plan, we all returned to the wall, each one to his work.“
Nehemiah’s goal was not just to reunite the people but to bring them back to God. But it was a constant battle as continuously the leaders surrounding them created plots to control the people and keep them from the plans God had for them.
It is all similar to what we are facing here in the 21st century. Anyone who has read this far and not stopped certainly must have some understanding of what is happening to our freedoms and more importantly how God is being removed from the forefront of our lives. When the Word of God was read in Nehemiah Chapter 8 it said the people were brought to their knees weeping. It was due to realizing they had been duped and they needed to repent. But they were also joyful that God had rescued them once again and they were back under His mighty protection. “This day is holy to the Lord your God; do not mourn or weep.” For all the people were weeping when they heard the words of the Law. 10 Then Ezra said to them, “Go your way, eat the rich festival food, drink the sweet drink, and send portions to him for whom nothing is prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. And do not be worried, for the joy of the Lord is your strength and your stronghold.” 11 So the Levites quieted all the people, saying, “Be still, for the day is holy; do not be worried.”
What a joyous and momentous moment after working so hard to win their freedom back and to now be able to worship God in peace. No worries. Some of us are in this place, you have God to thank for that! But maybe because of being in a good place, you may be saying I don’t need to read this stuff, I already have it. Others may be hearing such words of hope and joy for the first time ever.
For the first-timer and in between, now is a time to take back your brainpower and grasp what God has given us so perfectly said in a most popular verse – 2 Timothy 1:7 expanded by the AMP version “For God did not give us a spirit of timidity or cowardice or fear, but He has given us a spirit of power and of love and of sound judgment and personal discipline, that is abilities that result in a calm, well-balanced mind and self-control.“
A few weeks ago I had culminated a 22-day call from the Lord to do something bazaar. I posted on two of the world’s most popular social media sites Facebook and on Instagram three slides a day from 2-1-22 thru 2-22-22. The very last slide the Lord guided me to create tore me apart after piecing it together. I am not an emotional person and seldom do tears show up. If you don’t believe me read the story about the 20-year gap I had from a “quit your bawling‘ message from my Dad. For some reason, it hit me as hard as it did the Israelites when the scribe Ezrah read the word of God to them.
I had tears in my eyes and had to stop while creating this very last of 72 slides with the #22 depicting the scene and last of Jesus’ words. I felt an overwhelming thankfulness, a feeling of unworthiness, and also simultaneous joy.
- – The picture of Jesus hanging on the cross with the red background,
- – the tomb with the blood-drenched wrapping,
- – the glorious sunlight on the left with the cross in the background,
- – along with the words
- – all of this was from just 1/10th of Psalm 22, the most important written words in the old testament. Why else would Jesus make them His final words?
This is the real reason I write long stories!
The love of God is so hidden from people nowadays and the people are scourged with those like Sanballat and Tobiah. Sadly few understand how we are being duped and silenced, as was Jesus. The little exercise I did on social media produced few results, which I expected. I knew as the rulers of social media are known to censor anything to do with God, Jesus, the Bible, and silence the scribes if they are known to be Christians.
Interesting to note – “Sanballat” translated means “bramble-bush; or enemy in secret.” A bramble-bush is a thorny berry producing bush like blackberries. They look attractive on the outside, sweet-tasting, yet if you’re not careful those thorns will rip your hands and arms apart. But that does not mean you shouldn’t eat berries. We should continue to use (or restart using) the tools like Facebook which has a billion users to reach your friends and their friends. Maybe it is to awaken those who believe as you do. Or maybe it is someone you barely know from the past but they are suddenly seeking to find God and they stumble on something you wrote or shared that someone like a crazy average Joe wrote. Don’t quit like others have! Collaborate with those still hanging in there and spreading the word. Beat them at their own game. So many are homebound now scrolling and scrolling who knows when God is touching their heart ready to use some words of encouragement you have shared or posted.
I vowed to carry on and spread the light of the Son regardless of how few or many see or in my case read about His light. I encourage you to make sure first you are seeing the truth and see through the thorn bushes. And, be the light we are called to be!
If you are not a writer share other people’s writings with both those that are lost and those that are deceived. It is why I write two-stage stories so if you have a friend who went through a miscarriage, a relative killed by domestic violence, or needs to hear of a miracle heart stroke story, send them one of my stories to relate. Maybe they’ll read part II as you are now to hear the Good News of salvation and learn further how to walk as sons or daughters of The Light. If you don’t like mine, fine, share somebody else’s.
Oh, just a little tidbit further on long writings – You as a Bible reader knows that Paul wrote many letters to friends and churches, many more than what made it in the Bible. Did you ever count how many words he wrote in those blogs to the churches in one sitting? Find out here for every book but just a few to note, to the Romans 9,442 words, to the Corinthian twice 9,462 and 6,046, to the Hebrews (maybe Paul but somebody wrote) 6,897. Sheesh, this longgg story is only 3,600 words, lol.
If you have been discouraged as a scribe, don’t stop, get back to writing, or speaking, or serving, whatever your gifts may be. If you have a story to tell but no place to tell it, I have a guest post location on my website, I’ll post it for you for free no strings attached. It is all to spread the news about what Jesus finished. But we are not finished, we are Acts 29.
That is why amongst other reasons my friends, I write long stories.
P.S. – I hate popup ads, sign-up requests, book/conference promos, and requests for donations everywhere don’t you? But, getting the word out about new posts for a 100% free-to-you website is a tough task on social media. If you would like to be notified about new posts and occasional insiders only heart-pours, pop me a quick email to JoesPortico@gmail.com, and I’ll add you to my mailing list. And please make a comment if you have one, we all love interaction and opinions from readers and I don’t claim to be an expert on anything.
Please share your comments, your thoughts may be what others are afraid to say. Anonymous posts are allowed, but subject to good taste lest it be deleted. Email address is only required to prevent trolls.