Wisdom on Wealth


Everyone has money questions, whether it's what to do about retirement, or how to invest for the first time. Each week, Byron Moore offers practical, down-to-earth advice on handling money; and shows that even though money is important, paying attention to it can keep it from ruling your life.

You Have Enough Time

Jan 22, 2020
noor Younis / UNSPLASH.COM https://bit.ly/2G21vsN

Life is busy, isn’t it? Work, family, community commitments, a little social life…

But imagine for a moment the nightmare of every parent: in the middle of the night, your young child stumbles, bleary-eyed into your room, struggling to breathe. Is it a cold? Allergies? Asthma? Something else? Quickly you pull on some clothes and rush him to the emergency room. Maybe you’re there for an hour. Maybe all night.

Does it really matter? Of course not. You did what any loving parent would do – you took care of your priority - your child.

Elephant Time

Jan 20, 2020
K. Ouchley

I have seen the beginning and end of time. It first appeared on the steep slope of a volcanic crater perhaps a quarter-mile distant and flowed toward us in the form of a giant bull elephant. His gait was such that he moved without moving, a majestic fluid passing silent and determined. Time is like that. Evidence of his seasons reflected in huge, polished tusks worn on the ends from mining red clay banks for essential minerals. His right ear was ragged and cleft from an encounter with mortality.

Hunters Race / UNSPLASH.COM https://bit.ly/2Ns2p6e

Do you remember who taught you how to play tic-tac-toe? Probably not – for most of us it was a while ago. Usually it’s an older sibling or a neighbor kid down the street. They “graciously” offer to teach us how to play. They might even let us go first.

Three moves in they’ve got an “x” in the middle and an “x” on both lower corners. They look at you, smile, and offer, “Your turn.”

No matter what you do, you’re toast. No matter where your next “O” goes, you’re about to get “tic-tac-toed.”

All because they knew how the game works, and you didn’t.

Louis Velazquez / UNSPLASH.COM https://bit.ly/2sM2XNh

Every time Congress passes a major piece of legislation, they aren’t just passing a law. They are sending a message.

And with the passage of the SECURE Act, the message could not be clearer.

“Keep working.”

While most of us were wrapping the last of our Christmas packages a few weeks ago, Congress passed and the President signed into law the SECURE Act.

With broad bipartisan support, Congress obviously felt a need to pass The SECURE Act legislation precisely because most Americans are so in-secure when it comes to retirement.

Travis Essinger / UNSPLASH.COM https://bit.ly/2MZS1m7

You know that grumpy uncle of yours who has a lot of money but he is not a happy man? Not only is he always grumpy, he’s never at home and his kids don’t like him. All his big business buddies think he hung the moon, but they don’t really know him.

If he’s not your uncle, you know this guy.

Do some people just get to the point that when they have so much money that it just ruins them?

One of the most quoted verses in the bible is “money is the root of all evil.”

Except… it doesn’t say that.

photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/24742305@N00/4166078349">Snowflake Ornament</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">(license)</a>

I got a question a few years ago from a really nice guy who described himself as “NOT a believer, Christian or otherwise.”

But he owned a business and realized that most of his employees professed some level of belief. He asked me for advice on how to respond to Christmastime appeals to him of what he called “subtle and not so subtle sales pitches to believe.” He didn’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings, but he didn’t want to encourage them to continue.

Obstacles to Wealth

Dec 18, 2019
Justin Luebke / UNSPLASH.COM https://bit.ly/2r07s5K

Have you ever asked someone for directions and have them reply, “Oh, that’s about a mile away…as the crow flies.”

That is what you might call accurate information that is of little use. If you haven’t looked lately, you’re not a crow and you probably do not intend to fly from point A to point B.

It’s one thing to know the distance assuming no obstacles. It’s quite another thing to understand the distance, and the obstacles, so you can estimate the time lost due to various obstacles.

Adam Sherez / UNSPLASH.COM https://unsplash.com/photos/WMjqzYGoU5w

Debt is a powerful tool which can be used to magnify good things or exponentially multiply misery.

Generally speaking, using debt to buy items that will most likely decrease in value over time is a bad idea.

But debt used to finance the purchase of an asset that pays you an income (such as a rent house, a commercial building or even a business interest that pays a consistent dividend) is different.

GotCredit / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/vnone7s

The sun was on a 120 degree seek and destroy mission as the LSU Tigers were wrapping up their Saturday August scrimmage. My youngest son was playing fullback for the Tigers his senior year, and Melinda and I were sweating it out in the stands. 

Most of the team had left the field. We were talking with John David in what shade we could find. That’s when I looked up and saw Coach O coming our way. 

Iulian Ursu / Flickr.com https://bit.ly/37OKdfI

Some people just have a habit of having good habits.

I’ve known many men (and even more women) that fit that description. They just seem to have a habit of having good habits. And good stuff follows.

People like this make the most of their lives and are content with the results.

Financially speaking, they know how much is coming in the front door and that if the same (or more!) is going out the back door, there’s going to be a problem. Knowing this, they’re usually pretty good savers. I’m not surprised to see them save 15% to 20% of their income.