The events of December 18, 2010 set off the Arab Spring nearly on the eve of the new year. The distrust, disgust, and dissatisfaction with the current economic, political, and social conditions quickly spread throughout much of the Middle East and North Africa.
Tunisia and Egypt both ousted their long-standing presidents and overthrew the governments (Ben Ali for 24 years and Mubarak for 30 years). Libya erupted in civil war resulting in the fall of its long-standing regime under Gaddafi for 42 years.
Of course Uncle Sam has been reeling with his own financial problems and political dissidence. People are unemployed, foreclosed upon, living with little or no health insurance, and in major debt. They are the 99%.
Every generation has its stereotype- the industrious gentleman of the 1910s, the degenerate flapper of the ‘20s, the family centered husband of the ‘50s, the free love hippies of the ‘60s, and so on. The layman historian naturally embraces such distillations because it makes his job that much easier, and we naturally sympathize with his generalities because it makes for easy conversation pieces. The problem is that these stereotypes skew or at least introduce biases into our perception of what life really was like ‘back then.’ Not everything in the 1920s roared, and not everyone in the Middle Ages was religious.
God’s desire that all men be saved (1 Tim. 2:4) requires that Christians sympathize with God in this desire. God does not act unilaterally to carry out His purpose. Rather, He relies on man’s agreement, consent, and obedience. If Christians respond sooner, then God’s purpose will be accomplished sooner. For this reason, the Bible tells us that we can actually speed up the day of Christ’s return (2 Peter 3:12).
“We ought not to suppose that what is divine is like gold or silver or stone, like an engraving of art and thought of man.”
I found these style descriptions on a promo website when the W Hotel in Dallas was under construction. I think they were trying to say that the W appeals to all style dispositions, no matter how your chromosomes are wired. Obviously they have made selective reductions in the style spectrum. Which one are you?
A real one.
To add to the mystery unfolding in your brain, I bought this dictionary that I own. I know, I know. I’ve seen the reaction before. In fact, every time I mention this little detail of my life to someone I get it. Even the bookish lady who assisted me at the sales register voiced her surprise. “Wow, a dictionary. We don’t get many people buying these anymore.”
What is it about purchasing all the words in our language that garners such wonderment?
Despite many of my friends’ enduring expositions on electronic dictionaries and their ubiquity, smallness, and freeness, I am glad that I own a physical, hardbound, full-size dictionary. Weighing in at 8.2 pounds with 2076 pages, it is rather permanent in its placement in my apartment. It makes more sense to view it as a small piece of furniture.