Quips & Quote: Leaders Are Readers


For years Strickland Gillian's poem, The Reading Mother, hung on a wall in our home. The frame has been removed, but his words are still etched on my mind:

You may have tangible wealth untold, Caskets of jewels and coffers of gold. Richer than I you can never be. I had a mother who read to me.

Gillian captures the significance of reading, a practice we never outgrow. This week's quips and quotes captures the importance of reading for leaders.

Think about it: Leaders are readers

  1.  “Buy truth and do not sell it; buy wisdom, instruction and understanding.” Proverbs 23:23 ESV
  2. “My books are my tools. They also serve as my counsel, my consolation, and my comfort. They are my source of wisdom and the font of my education. They are my friends and my delights. They are my surety, when all else is awry, that I have set my confidence in the substantial things of truth and right.” Charles Spurgeon
  3. “The scandal of the evangelical mind is that there is not much of an evangelical mind.” Mark Noll, The Scandal Of The Evangelical Mind.
  4. Read not to contradict and confute; nor to believe and take for granted; nor to find talk and discourse; but to weigh and consider. Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested; that is, some books are to be read only in parts; others to be read, but not curiously; and some few to be read wholly, and with diligence and attention. Francis Bacon, The Essays
  5. The first rule for reading a book: “You must know what kind of book you are reading, and you should know this as early in the process as possible, preferable before you begin to read.” Mortimer Adler, How To Read A Book
  6. When you come, bring the cloak that I left with Carpus at Troas, also the books, and above all the parchments.” Paul to his friend Timothy while in jail for his faith in Christ. 2 Timothy 4:13
  7. "If I had read as many books as other people, I would know as little.” English philosopher Hobbes.
  8. “An old author whose pen name was Claudius Clear said that a reader could divide his books as he would people. A few were ‘lovers,’ and those books would go with him into exile. Others are ‘friends.’ Most books are ‘acquaintances,’ works with which he was on nodding terms.” J. Oswald Sanders, Spiritual Leadership, page 104.
  9. “Biographies have served as much as any other human force in my life to resist the inertia of mediocrity. Without them I tend to forget what joy there is in relentless God-besotted labor and aspiration.” John Piper, Brothers We Are Not Professionals, page 89.
  10. “An ounce of history is worth a pound of logic.” Oliver Wendell Holmes

Recapping the week:

Proverbs 23:23 says, Buy the truth and do not sell it. Leaders gain truth for living and leading by reading.This week's posts focus on this important discipline:

  • Tuesday: Five Reasons You’ve Got To Read Leaders understand Harry Truman’s adage: Not all readers are leaders, but all leaders are readers. Why? Because reading comes with a benefits package. This post examines five reasons why leaders must read.
  • Wednesday: How To Read A Book In 15 MinutesYou’re a leader. Time is precious. You’ve got to read but reading everything you need to read—not to mention what you want to read—is tough. What’s a leader to do?  This post focuses on how to master the art of reading a book in 15 minutes!
  • Thursday: How To Break Out Of A Reading SlumpLeaders, like baseball players, fall into slumps–reading slumps! In this post I share six ways you can break out of a reading slump and get back your reading momentum.
  • Friday: Quips & Quotes: Leaders Are ReadersIn this post I share a summary of what we have discussed this week, including ten key quotes that relate to reading. What do you learn from them? I also offer a glimpse at what we will be discussing next week.

Looking ahead to next week:

I'll be traveling next week, which means I'll be posting just Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.

  • Tuesday: 10 Assessment Question Every Leader Must Ask. These come from Max De Pree and are excellent.
  • Thursday: Vacuuming The Brain, key lessons learned from Jim Collins.
  • Friday: How Leaders Get Their Groove Back.

Leaders Are Readers Book Giveaway:

Today we are giving away, Eyewitness To Power, by David Gergen. I learned a lot from this book. Here's what the publisher says about it: "From Nixon to Clinton, Watergate to Whitewater, few Americans have observed the ups and downs of presidential leadership more closely over the past thirty years than David Gergen. A White House adviser to four presidents, both Republican and Democrat, he offers a vivid, behind-the-scenes account of their struggles to exercise power and draws from them key lessons for leaders of the future."

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And the winner is . . .Yesterday's Leaders Are Readers Book Giveaway winner is Craig Kindell. Craig won, Your Life At Work: Marketplace Success for People of Faith by John Maxwell. The book is being sent today. You can enter today's drawing by clicking in the box above. Enter every day!