The Wisdom Chronicle is designed to bring nuggets of wisdom from the dozens of books I read every year. I endeavor to share the best of what I have gleaned. The determination of relevance lies with you. Blessings, J. Whiddon
- OUCH! “Some believe the shin was invented for finding furniture in the dark. Others find the little toe much more effective for such activity.” — Michael Hodgin
- INDECISION “For many young people who struggle to make decisions, the lies are colliding. Teens want to be happy while they’re the center of the universe. They want to have choice, but choosing one thing means they can’t choose something else. And they can’t know now if they’ll be happy if they’ve never gone to college before, played basketball in high school, or dated Ashley or Jamie. As a result, they make no decision. And no decision is a decision.”
Excerpt From: Koch, Kathy. “Screens and Teens.”
- ACT NOW Preacher to the congregation: “Crying babies and disruptive children, like good intentions, should be carried out immediately. – Michael Hodgin
- AGE MATTERS “A while back, Fortune magazine did their cover story on Warren Buffet of Omaha, Nebraska. The magazine tells the amazing tale of one of our country’s most successful billionaires. He has been an enormous success as he has invested in all kinds of companies in the process of building the conglomerate, Berkshire Hathaway. He has been referred to as “The Wizard of Omaha.” He looks for strong companies that are well positioned in the market. He seeks to take over these companies. Then he leaves the management of these acquired companies in place, rather than replacing them, as do many other corporate chairmen.
One of the companies he owns is Nebraska Furniture Mart, which was founded by Rose Blumkin. He keeps in touch with the local managers in many different ways, usually informal, such as by phone, or by means of periodic meetings over a meal. The following is Fortune’s description of Buffet’s dealings with the Blumkin family, prior to the family’s splitting into competitive factions. The Blumkin family (or as Buffet refers to them, “the amazing Blumkins”) meet for dinner every few weeks at an Omaha restaurant. The Blumkins attending usually include Louis, 68, and his sons: Ron 39; Irv, 35; and Steve, 33.
The matriarch of the family and chairman of the Furniture Mart is Rose Blumkin, who emigrated from Russia as a young woman, started a tiny furniture store that offered rock-bottom prices. Her motto is “Sell cheap and tell the truth.” She built this furniture store into a business that last year did $140 million in sales. At age 94, she still works seven days a week in the carpet department.
Buffet says in his new annual report that she is clearly gathering speed and “may well reach her full potential in another five or ten years. Therefore, I’ve persuaded the Board to scrap our mandatory retirement-at-100 policy. And it’s about time,” he adds. “With every passing year, this policy has seemed sillier to me.”
Perhaps he jests, true, but Buffet simply does not regard age as having any bearing on how able a manager is. Maybe because he has bought so many strong managements and stuck with them, he has worked over the years with an unusually large number of older executives and treasured their abilities. Buffet says, “Good managers are so scarce I can’t afford the luxury of letting them go just because they’ve added a year to their age.”
Excerpt From: Hodgin, Michael. “1001 Humorous Illustrations for Public Speaking.”
- HEAVEN “Heaven is real. Throughout time God has implanted within the soul of man a longing for such a place. All primitive people believed in an afterlife. In ages gone by, the ancient cave dwellers depicted such in paintings on the walls of their caves. More than three thousand years ago the Egyptians buried their pharaohs with supplies, eating utensils, weapons, and even servants in their quest for a life that is beyond this one. The American Indians had their “happy hunting grounds” where they believed the departed lived again. God has implanted and instilled within the very being of man a desire for more from life than what we have on earth.” Excerpt From: O. S. Hawkins. “The Joshua Code.”
- CELL PHONE “Technology can be our best friend, and technology can also be the biggest party pooper of our lives. It interrupts our own story, interrupts our ability to have a thought or a daydream, to imagine something wonderful, because we’re too busy bridging the walk from the cafeteria back to the office on the cellphone.” –STEVEN SPIELBERG
- INFO VS. WISDOM “Teens want information, especially that relevant to their personal interests and the problems they’d like to help solve, but young people may believe they don’t need to go deeper and actually seek wisdom. Information satisfies them. Because many don’t prioritize going deep, they don’t believe they need teachers. As a result, many do not recognize their need for guidance.
Stopping at information, short of seeking wisdom and guidance, short-circuits young people’s progress toward future dreams and their worthy plans for changing the world. Frustration sets in as they discover they’re not totally prepared to be the change agents they want to be. The “information lie” is a subtle one, and young people may not realize that information is not enough.”
Excerpt From: Koch, Kathy. “Screens and Teens.”
- PREPARATION “Luck is the residue of design.” -Branch Rickey
- RAISING KIDS “And how many families there are, though not so profane, who yet breed up their children vainly and sensually, and take no care what becomes of their souls, if they can but provide for their bodies (Job 21:11)! If they can but teach them to carry their bodies, no matter if the devil actuate their souls. If they can but leave them lands or monies, they think they have very fully discharged their duties. O, what will the language be with which such parents and children shall greet each other at the judgment-seat, and in hell for ever!”
Excerpt From: Flavel, John. “The Mystery of Providence.”
- ANGER “Speak when you’re angry, and you’ll deliver the best speech you’ll ever regret.”
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