Sunday, March 25

Our world is changing fast

I just finished Thomas L. Friedman's The World Is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century.

As the sub-title sugests, the book is a brief history of how our world has forever changed in only the past dozen or so years. Basically to continue to operate in the old paradigm way of thinking and understanding the world, will lead to serious consequences.

The book's jacket describes Friedman's account of the "great changes taking place in our time, as lightning swift advances in technology and communications put people all over the globe in touch as never before...[The book] shows how and why globalization has now shifted into warp drive and brilliantly demystifies the new flat world for readers, allowing them to make sense of the often bewildering scene unfolding before their eyes... More than ever, The World Is Flat is an essential update on globalization, its successes and discontents..."

What does the flatenning of the world mean for global missionary work? There is so much in these 575 pages that speak to missions issues. In order to stay in tune with a rapidly changing world, we will need to adapt our thinking, methods and outreach strategies. The implications of a flat world must be faced if we are going to continue to make any kind of impact upon lostness in the years to come.

The following YouTube video is not directly related to Friedman's work, but speaks in the same language and vein of how flat our world is quickly becoming. I have seen this PowerPoint video featured here and on several other blogs, and invite you to ponder the significance of the following facts...


negrito said...

Blows you away, huh?
What missions structures do we need (or need to change) to keep pace with such change and involve the myspace generation?

S.A.M. said...

Guy, you have been in the mission field for many years. How has the field changed since you have been in it, and have you been able to adapt to the changes in the world? I know that in South Asia, the poorest areas still are living in almost New Testament times, even though there is much technology around. The culture is so different in the "uddermost" than it is in the U.S. Is it the same in Ecuador?


GuyMuse said...

Negrito and SAM,

One of the main points I got out of the book is the importance of affirming, valuing, and especially empowering of individual people. The flatenning of the world is about empowered individuals vs. powerful corporations, political states, etc. Those inidividuals who are free to access the flat world, are on the same playing field as the "big boys" and that is what is making the difference.

The implications, to me, for missions, is to affirm and continue to empower individuals placing in their hands the needed tools to impact their world for Christ.

Tim Patterson said...

Whoa! This is huge. Thanks for the link Guy. Makes me wonder how we will ever keep up when we are already so far behind. It is exciting to see the potential for world evangelization but at the same time sobering to realize we must be constantly adapting.

Anonymous said...

He leído su informe sobre el libro y ví el Power Point
¡Que buen informe! Me dejó pensando...

GuyMuse said...


Me dejó pensando tambien, a igual que muchos de tus pensamientos que compartas en "El Ojo Protestante". Si tienes el chance, te recomiendo el libro, no se si aun está en Español, pero si vale la pena explorar sus 575 páginas.

Anonymous said...

Querido Guy
Lo tendré en cuenta.
Con el afecto de siempre, Dany

Watchman said...


This is a great book, as I see the effects of the flattening of the church as well. Flattening will lead to greater participation. No longer will the church staff control everything. Men will finally be able step up as they watch this cultural shift of flattening, and realize that church culture can also move in the same direction.