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
- CLOSE FRIENDS? “If you belong to a group of five people, you have to keep track of ten separate relationships: your relationships with the four others in your circle and the six other two-way relationships between the others. That’s what it means to know everyone in the circle. You have to understand the personal dynamics of the group, juggle different personalities, keep people happy, manage the demands on your own time and attention, and so on. If you belong to a group of twenty people, however, there are now 190 two-way relationships to keep track of: 19 involving yourself and 171 involving the rest of the group. That’s a fivefold increase in the size of the group, but a twentyfold increase in the amount of information processing needed to “know” the other members of the group. Even a relatively small increase in the size of a group, in other words, creates a significant additional social and intellectual burden.”
Excerpt From: Gladwell, Malcolm. “The Tipping Point.”
- THE CLASSICS “A ‘classic’ is a book everyone praises but no one reads.” –M. Twain
- THE WORD “Beware of knowing the words of God, without knowing the God of the words.” — Chris Seidman
- BOOK VALUE A man told his friend about a worn bible he found in his attic and sold at a rummage sale. His friend asked, “What kind of bible was it?”
“I don’t know. It said ‘Guten-something’ in it.”
“WHAT! Don’t you realize that was a Gutenberg bible! One was just sold at auction for over $4 million!” Exclaimed his friend.
“Oh no, don’t worry….this one was not valuable…it had all kinds of notes scribbled in it by some guy named Luther.”
- PRAYER “Did God call us to preach without ceasing? Or teach without ceasing? Or have committee meetings without ceasing? Or sing without ceasing? No, but he did call us to “pray without ceasing” (1 Thess. 5:17).
Did Jesus declare: My house shall be called a house of study? Fellowship? Music? A house of exposition? A house of activities? No, but he did say, “My house will be called a house of prayer” (Mark 11:17 NIV).
No other spiritual activity is guaranteed such results. “When two of you get together on anything at all on earth and make a prayer of it, my Father in heaven goes into action” (Matt. 18:19 MSG). He is moved by the humble, prayerful heart.”
Excerpt From: Lucado, Max. “Outlive Your Life.”
- FALSE MASCULINITY “As a young boy, I’ m going to compare my athletic ability to yours and compete for whatever attention that brings. When I get older, I’m going to compare my girlfriend to yours and compete for whatever status I can acquire by being with the prettiest or the coolest or the best girl I can get. Ultimately, as adults, we compare bank accounts and job titles, houses and cars, and we compete for the amount of security and power that those represent. We will even compare our children and compete for some sense of fatherhood and significance attached to their achievements.
We compare, we compete. That’s all we ever do. It leaves most men feeling isolated and alone. And it destroys any concept of community.
The typical male over the age of thirty-five has what psychologists would say is less than one genuine friend, not even one person, on average, with whom he can reveal his true self and share his deepest, most intimate thoughts.”
Excerpt From: Marx, Jeffrey. “Season of Life.”
- TV VIOLENCE “While TV may report some of the flaws in police states, it can only show the flaws of democratic and near-democratic countries.
The greatest evils in the world occur in countries that do not allow Western cameras to report such events. Therefore, almost all the violence that one sees as news on American and Western television takes place in free or relatively free countries. Thus, the violence shown on TV news nearly always takes place in those nations that have the least political violence and repression. Riots in Israel are covered, as are murders in the United States, and political violence in South Korea.
But the political violence in these countries is dwarfed by that of totalitarian states such as North Korea and China, and police states such as Syria or Libya.”
Excerpt From: Prager, Dennis. “Think a Second Time.”
- XTIANS MISUNDERSTOOD “According to Larry Poland of Master Media, his company’s research found that only 2 to 3 percent of the people who work in media are evangelical Christians. That compares with about 26 percent of the general population who are evangelicals. He added, “Most media don’t have any evangelical friends, don’t read evangelical publications, and have never been to church.” So, for more than half of the nation’s regular churchgoers, members of the media are basically ignorant. They just don’t know evangelicals or their world, they have no idea what constitutes a news story from that very large community, and yet they report what they determine is news about evangelicals.
Imagine sending a reporter who has never seen a football game and knows nothing about the sport to cover the Super Bowl. As the quarterback dropped back to pass, we’d probably get a report on what the cheerleaders were wearing, and that’s exactly what happens when members of the media attempt to cover Christian ministries. Instead of reporters practically living with their assigned beats, as in sports, business, and political reporting, members of the media spend little time in church, know very few of the leaders and key organizations in the Christian community, which contributes to incomplete and inaccurate reporting.”
Excerpt From: Bob Hutchins & Greg Stielstra. “Faith-Based Marketing.”
- CAUSE OF INCOME INEQUALITY “Sometimes the preoccupation with the receipt of incomes, to the neglect of attention to the production of the output, can lead to attempts to explain the receipt of very large incomes by “greed”—as if [merely] an insatiable DESIRE for vast amounts of money will somehow cause others to pay those vast amounts for the purchase of one’s goods or services.
Among the many possible causes of differences in income and wealth, whether among peoples, regions or nations, one of the most obvious is often ignored. As economist Henry Hazlitt put it:
“The real problem of poverty is not a problem of “distribution” but of production. The poor are poor not because something is being withheld from them but because, for whatever reason, they are not producing enough.”
Excerpt From: Sowell, Thomas. “Wealth, Poverty and Politics.”
- WHO YOU ARE “We do not live in the past, but the past lives in us.”
— Ulrich Bonnell Phillips
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