Abundant Living Vol. XIX, Issue 49

“But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!  – Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 

My neighbor and I were commiserating the other day about the problem we are both experiencing with our newspaper carrier, who is unacceptably inconsistent in delivering the papers on time, or some days not at all.  Yet, the system for reporting such matters only offers two choices, either an automated voice response if you call on the phone, or an automated on-line link.  No option is offered to speak with a live human being.

While I am a huge believer in technology and a supporter of its continued advancement, I also believe there is nothing mankind can ever invent or develop that can replace human contact, including artificial intelligence (AI) that is getting so much press these days.  Technology, after all, even at its best, is merely a human invention.  We humans, though, are created by God in His own image, and there is no way man can out-create God.

Many years ago in my former career there was great fear that technological advancements were going to displace many of our jobs, that clients could access the same information we had and they would be able to transact business without our assistance.  But the CEO of our company reminded us of something I have never forgotten, that is that “people will always be in need of the advice and counsel of a fellow human being.”

Recently an urgent message appeared in my inbox from a client who needed to talk to me right away about a crucial meeting he was about to attend.  He needed some assurance that he was properly prepared in terms of the content for which he was responsible, and “advice and counsel” on the best way to present himself.  In a conversation that lasted no more than ten minutes, all I did was listen and offer encouragement.  Yet, at the end he thanked me profusely, that I had helped him get “his head screwed on straight.”

Being human, something I believe technology can never do even in its highest form, was the missing link with my neighbor and me in our frustration with the newspaper carrier.  It is only our fellow human beings who provide us with companionship and intimacy, and with whom we have relationships.  Let’s face it, we need each other, or as my old boss once said, “people will always be in need of the advice and counsel of a fellow human being.”  “But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *