Holier than thou Twitter Posts

Posted: September 15, 2009 in Uncategorized

I recently got into Jon Acuff’s blog, “Stuff Christians Like,” a Christian satire blog.  He is a great Christian who likes to laugh at some of the things that Christians do.  I saw this one had just had to share it.  It is entitled:  “Writing twitter messages that sound 14% holier than you usually are.”   I hope you enjoy.  I know I sure did…

#560. Writing twitter messages that sound 14% holier than you usually are.

Sometimes, when I sit down to tweet or twitter or twittle or whatever the verb is we’re currently using to describe the action of putting a 140 character message on twitter, I am tempted to write something 14% holier than I normally would.

It’s not that I want to lie, I just find myself thinking, “WWJT” and then I end up writing something more holy spirity religitastic than I’d usually say to a friend at a cookout or on the phone to my brother.

(If you don’t twitter, it’s an online service that essentially gives you a chance to “micro-blog” a short answer to the question, “what are you doing?” to your friends.)

But it’s not easy. It’s not easy to fit the entire gospel message into the 140 character messages you’re allowed to give on twitter. And when I recently read that celebrities had hired “ghost tweeters,” people that are paid to write and post short messages that make you feel like Kanye West or Britney Spears is regularly updating twitter with humor and insight, I had an idea.

Maybe instead of fighting my desire to write “super spiritual tweets” I need to embrace it. Maybe, all this time that I’ve been praying for a full time ministry I’ve missed what was right there in front of me. Maybe, it’s like Richard Marx said, twitter wants me to know, “Wherever you go, whatever you do, I will be right here waiting for you.”*

Maybe, it’s time to write the ultimate guide to crafting holy sounding twitter updates. Here are the 7 approaches I think you can take and actual examples that are less than 140 characters:

1. The Retweet
This move is kind of like looking into a mirror that is next to a mirror and staring off into infinity. When you see someone you follow write something holy, just put a RT in front of it to let everyone else know that you too had a very similar holy thought. You want to take it up a notch? Add an “Amen” in front of the RT. It’s like they just made a church hot fudge sundae and you come along and put the cherry on top. You’ll get 80% of the credit with 5% of the work.

Example:
Amen! RT @JESUSROX – The only time I’m not reading the Bible is in the shower but I’m inventing a waterproof OT so that will change soon.

2. The Riddler
Your followers, the people on twitter that sign up to read your updates, are expecting you to report back things like how you stepped in gum on the sidewalk or what type of mustard the waiter put on your sandwich. Throw them for a loop with an esoteric brain twister of spirituality that will have them twitaplexed all afternoon.

Example:
If God is all powerful, can He create an object so heavy that even He can’t lift it up? And if He did, what color would that object be?

3. Quiet Time
Want to look holy in your twitter updates? Constantly reference things you learned during your daily quiet time. Yes, that 30 minute window might represent 1/48th of your day, but that doesn’t mean you can’t twitter about it as if it were 19 hours long.

Example:
During my quiet time, God revealed some things to me. It’s hard to capture all of them in one Tweet, but here is the first of 32 updates.

4. The Church Sign
Pretend your twitter updates are church billboards. Just tweet things like, “CH__CH, what’s missing? UR!” The best part is that because church signs tend to be short, you can cram in a number of statements into each tweet.

Example:
God accepts knee-mail. No God, no peace. Know God, know peace. Go to church for a free faith lift.

5. Quote
Clearly, if you want to get your spirituality on in a short burst of words, you should bust out a quote from a well known theologian. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, CS Lewis is the way to go. His name only costs you 8 characters too. It’s like 50 years ago he knew that twitter would one day come along and he would need a short name to get some quote love. Seriously, you can’t quote “St. Augustine of Hippo” on twitter. You just don’t have the room.

Example:
Christianity,if false, is of no importance,and if true, of infinite importance. The only thing it cannot be is moderately important.CS Lewis

6. The Other Day
Start every tweet with some sort of bold statement that you act casual about because you’re always doing things like this. “The other day while helping a group of drifters forage for sweet berries in the woods, I noticed …” Oh what? My drifter ministry? That’s just something I do for fun in my spare time.

Example:
The other day while rescuing orphaned baby seals and handing out free Bibles to fisherman, I stubbed my toe on the sidewalk. Kind of hurt.

7. Across the Uni-Verse
The easiest way to kick the doors of twitter open and proclaim, “Here I am, Gospel like a hurricane” is to simply quote a Bible verse and then link to a site like biblegateway.com. It’s kind of a lazy way to do things, which is why I personally don’t quote verses, I quote whole books.

Example:
Have you guys read Isaiah lately? You should check that book out. http://www.biblegateway.com/

Chances are, I’ll never get hired by any famous Christians to ghost tweet for them. But if I do, Carmen I am talking to you at this exact second, please know that I will be employing all 7 of those techniques, even if my tweet last week about the commute didn’t exactly reflect any degree of holiness:

“Sometimes, Atlanta drivers react to rain the same way my 3 year old reacts to the vacuum: raw terror, apprehension and 5MPH escape plans.”

Did I miss any ways to look 14% holier when you twitter?

Do you twitter?

Do you ever find yourself tempted to holy it up?

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