Franz Hi Franz, I understand that you're busy. You better be, I'm waiting for the 1.0 version of your product. ?
Just so you know, we are in the same boat, I have a full time job and I'm trying to build a website by myself, which as you know already, requires lots of effort.
As far as serverless goes, you seem to be having some misconceptions about my arguments. I don't think I've framed my argument as - everybody's doing it, so we should too. My argument is rather that the concept offers certain advantages which outweigh the cons compared to a traditional server-based architecture. That advantage is simplicity and automation. Tell me, why would you want to do any of the following things?
Setup hosting servers manually
Setup web server on the host server manually
Setup load balancing manually
Setup backup servers manually
None of those things are fun for developers. We used to do them because we had no choice. All of those things, and many more including security, are now completely automated from the perspective of the developer. If there is no server, then there are no chores for you to do that are usually related with servers. Period. This is an obvious and giant advantage, which no 12 factor point list is going to overcome.
Now put yourself in my shoes. Let's say that I finally finish my serverless website and I'm enjoying myself since I don't have to take care of the infrastructure my website is running on. Next, I decide to add a forum, and I choose Flarum. Do you honestly think I'll be happy if I have to provision my own server just to run Flarum? Why would I do that when its clearly possible to NOT have to bother with servers?
Now, from your perspective, in the short run it would be a pain to transfer the existing Flarum code to serverless or build a serverless version. But in the long run, it would certainly be beneficial.
Also, AWS supports serverless PHP, so its not a choice between serverless and PHP. You can do both at the same time. As far as GraphQL goes, its pretty much an automated version of the standard REST API which makes it more flexible. No need to modify your API when you decide to add new service calls. But then again, you don't need to use GraphQL to do serverless architecture, but they go hand in hand, so its a good idea.
In any case, I'm here to give suggestions and not make demands, hope you choose the best for your project.