AN ENCOURAGING WORD FOR June 14, 2007 - written by Dr. Thomas Lane Butts, Pastor Emeritus, Monroeville First United Methodist Church and posted here with his permission.
Several weeks ago I boarded a plane in Chicago at 7:00 a.m. and landed in Mobile, Alabama at 8:45 a.m. We were traveling about 30,000 feet at more than 500 m.p.h. From before the time of Jesus until the 20th century speed of travel was limited to the speed of a galloping horse. Rockets propelling astronauts into space move at more than 10 times the speed of sound. When I was growing up during the Great Depression our primary mode of transportation was a 2 mule wagon. I remember the first radio in our community. We walked two miles on Saturday night to hear the Grand Ole Opry. Our family bought our first radio from Sears and Roebuck after the beginning of World War II. As a child, I sat in awe before that radio as we listened to the "war news."
Here are some interesting facts from a newsletter I read about how our world is changing.
The U.S. Department of Labor estimates that today’s learner will have 10 to 14 jobs by age 38.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, 1 out of 4 workers today is working for a company for whom they have been employed less that 1 year.
More than 1 out of 2 are working for a company for whom they have worked less than 5 years.
According to former Secretary of Education, Richard Riley, the top 10 jobs that will be in demand in 2010 didn’t exist in 2004.
We are currently preparing students for jobs that don’t yet exist – jobs that will be using technologies that haven’t yet been invented, in order to solve problems we don’t even know are problems yet.
More than 3,000 new books are published daily.
It is estimated that a week’s worth of the New York Times contains more information than a person was likely to come across in a lifetime in the 18th century.
For the students starting a four-year technical degree, this means that half of what they learn in their first year of study will be outdated by their third year of study.
There are some things that have never changed and never will. Loneliness and the sense of awe when a child is born; the hunger of the human heart for meaning and purpose in life. The whole spectrum of human feelings from the deepest hurt to the most ecstatic joy is a constant. The innate need for some meaningful connection with that "unseen other" from whose hand we suppose we come. The spiritual nature and needs of humans never change.
If the world is moving too fast for you, go to your church this Sunday and you will be in the presence of the unchanged and unchanging. That is a source of comfort and encouragement in a scary world.
AN ENCOURAGING WORD FOR June 14, 2007 - written by Dr. Thomas Lane Butts, Pastor Emeritus, Monroeville First United Methodist Church