07 December 2013

Change or die

My first cell phone by bobmendo
My first cell phone, a photo by bobmendo on Flickr.

I remember carrying the cell (mobile, hand) phone around Washington DC. The year was 1993 and I was busy traveling from one appointment to another to visit Jewish people, and had to have my phone with me in the new 'reachable' world. After all, the office was not my only haunt; when I was out people had to be able to reach me.

The phone was jacketed by a leather pouch, and the phone itself was nothing different than what I had at home. It was portable only in that I carried it around, but otherwise it looked like a regular desk phone.

Then they brought out the brick and the pouch was gone. The new mobiles from flip phones and sliders to iPhones etc were ushered in. All that is left of those early days are old movies and sentiments and fading memories.

Which today make me think about all kinds of 'old' things. (Hard to call something 20 years old old: compare a university student). Kurt Cobain has been dead for 19 years, Seinfeld has been off the air for 14 years, that is, no new shows since 1998. Is that old?

Sometimes I play sports with older folks and they call me "the young lad." Or they say, "When I was your age..." Age is always relative. My kids think I'm the old guy, and I'm going to guess my grandson will say that with more clarity and conviction. [maybe he already does, but I don't speak toddlerspeak]

All this thinking about age and changing to remind myself, and anyone else who is listening, that reality requires us to change as we age. The cell phone which was only a phone changed and we have smart phones and apps and all things at our fingertips anytime and anywhere. The TV no longer is black and white and analog is gone. My bellbottoms and afro haircut were supplanted by other looks.

This from Alan Deutchman in his book "Change or die" and a review from last year in California. They aver that people will not change and can prove it scientifically. "You want odds? Here are the odds, the scientifically studied odds: nine to one. That's nine to one against you. How do you like those odds?

This revelation unnerved many people in the audience last November at IBM's "Global Innovation Outlook" conference. The company's top executives had invited the most farsighted thinkers they knew from around the world to come together in New York and propose solutions to some really big problems. They started with the crisis in health care, an industry that consumes an astonishing $1.8 trillion a year in the United States alone, or 15% of gross domestic product. A dream team of experts took the stage, and you might have expected them to proclaim that breathtaking advances in science and technology -- mapping the human genome and all that -- held the long-awaited answers. That's not what they said. They said that the root cause of the health crisis hasn't changed for decades, and the medical establishment still couldn't figure out what to do about it."

This makes it that much more significant that people actually do change. The best change ever of course, is to go from darkness to light. From living for yourself to living for God. From sin to salvation in Yeshua. Holy people know that change on a personal level is a function of our relationship with the Almighty.

Change is not something we conjure or create. We are responsive to the leading of the Holy Spirit. That's where real change happens-- inside our hearts. Then the externals are much easier.

Listen, change is never easy, but it's a lot easier to change in belief or in behavior when we belong to the Lord, and live to represent Him.

Let's see how that works out for you.

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