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The Weekly Update page is extracted from a weekly e-mail sent out by
Assistant Pastor Donna Pollock
“You feel it in your workplace. You feel it when you talk to your kids. You can’t miss it when you read the newspapers or watch the news. Our lives are being transformed in so many realms all at once—and it is dizzying,” exclaims Thomas Friedman, author of a new book entitled, Thank You for Being Late: An Optimist’s Guide to Thriving in the Age of Accelerations. He was the author of the popular book The World is Flat.
Friedman thinks the major inflection point occurred in 2007, symbolized by the release of the iPhone, though he offers many more examples. There was at that moment a convergence of change in five key areas: workplace, politics, geopoliltics, ethics, and community, along with an acute acceleration in three significant areas: technology, globalization, and Mother Nature (climate change). We are living through a season of seismic change, as if we haven’t noticed! How should we respond? He urges us to pause and savor the moment as we pass to the next stage of development, which holds out immense threats and possibilities. Both.
He’s considerably more optimistic than I am, especially if his analysis is anywhere near accurate. The coming world will be increasingly competitive. Climate change will put tremendous pressure on various populations, especially in chronically poor areas. Hopelessness may fuel despair or rage. Those who are among the “haves” may not want to share. Meanwhile, every individual, empowered in expressive new ways (for good or evil—“What about the troubled kid who hacks into the grid and opens the gates of the Hoover Dam?”), will need to work harder, faster, and smarter to keep up with the changes. Don’t worry if you fall behind; nobody can keep up!
I got worn down listening to the author, who is considerably more optimistic than I. While I have hope, I’m not sure human beings can or will change fast enough to cope with all the changes coming at us. But we better try says Friedman. His remedy: Keep on learning! Help each other, cooperate. Motivation: It’s our only chance for survival. And I thought I had faith!