22Jun

Wealth, is it worth it? A New Book from Truett Cathy

One thing many people tell you when you choose to marry a person is you not only marry them but their family as well. I am blessed beyond belief to have married into my wife’s family, as they consistently teach me how to live a life that loves the Lord first and foremost. Not only do they value marriage and support our marriage fully, but they have also taught us how to steward our influence in a way that will make a positive impact on the people in our lives.

One of the great men in my wife’s family is someone who is not only known for his business and entrepreneurial skills, but also for his passion for people and his unwavering commitment to his faith. I am thankful that I know him as a man who has poured into his family over the years, who sets an example of what it really means to love one another and who teaches us to be excellent in all we do. Today he has come out with a new book called, “Wealth, is it Worth it?“.

In this book, Truett Cathy talks about his hardships growing up in the depression, the hard work it took to create a restaurant that grew into a successful company and addresses the question about wealth and its worth.

The book serves as a reminder of the good things a person can do with money, but also how destructive money can be. The book offers several stories about people who came into a large amount of money but failed to steward it wisely. However, the book also looks at people who are generous and use wealth to be a blessing to others.

A take-a-way for me as I read the book is that success is not an overnight event. Truett shares about the early days: the Great Depression, the 36-hour shifts at the original Dwarf Grill and the struggles of running two restaurants at one time. This proves that a chain of over 1,500 restaurants with over 3 billion dollars in annual sales happens over a long period of time and hard work, not overnight.

On Monday night, we sat down with Angela’s granddad for dinner and I asked, “Truett, remind me how old you were when you opened the Dwarf Grill?” Truett responded saying he was only 25 and that in the early days he would work around the clock. He shared a few stories about people not showing up for work which caused him to stay and cook all night. His first day of sales was about $130 with payouts of nearly $700. As I listened, it was encouraging to think that it was not until 21 years later that the first Chick-fil-A opened in the Greenbrier Mall. Even more, it was an additional 19 years before the first free standing Chick-fil-A restaurant was built.

I need to remember that success is not something that happens overnight. Success takes hard work- it can be lonely at the beginning and it can take time to achieve. Like many people in my generation, I want to be an overnight success, but this is not a reality.

Throughout the book, readers learn that the hard work paid off for Truett. He was able to gain resources which has allowed him to be generous in many ways. These resources have even enabled him to start and help support the ministries of the WinShape Foundation. At the close of the book, Truett reminds readers that wealth is only worth it if you are willing to be generous with it.

I encourage you to read the book- it’s a quick read and serves as a good reminder to us all. You can buy a copy from Amazon, here. Also, I am giving away one free autographed copy on my blog. To be entered to win, answer the question below by leaving a comment to this blog post.

Who in your life teaches you about generosity? How do they teach you? Why is generosity important?

To be entered to win, you must comment by 12:00 PM on Saturday (6.25.11). Winner will be notified by Monday (6.27.11). You must leave your email or way to contact you attached to your comment.
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About Brent Fielder

I am passionate about being intentional with my influence in the next generation. I love to read, write, spend time with friends, and invest in people around me. I am an avid coffee drinker and a raving fan of Chick-fil-A. I am married to an incredible wife and father of two awesome boys.

7 comments

  1. My parents teach me about generosity. They taught me how to manage money well as a teenager and an adult, but also bless our family daily with unexpected gifts. This is important because we need to share what God has blessed us with!

  2. My parents have always been more than generous with me, but currently my mentor and former pastor, Stan Lewis, teaches me about generosity. He invests so much time, money and home-cooked meals in me and some other people my age, who don’t have much at all to give back other than appreciation. It’s humbling and inspiring at the same time.

    Great blog Brent.

    -Murphy Maddox

  3. Like Murphy, my parents modeled generosity generosity as I was growing up. A verse that comes to mind when I think about generosity is:

    “One person gives freely, yet gains even more;
    another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty.
    A generous person will prosper;
    whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.” -Proverbs 11:24-25

    That is some good stuff!

  4. Like Murphy, my parents modeled generosity generosity as I was growing up. A verse that comes to mind when I think about generosity is:

    “One person gives freely, yet gains even more;
    another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty.
    A generous person will prosper;
    whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.” -Proverbs 11:24-25

    That is some good stuff!

  5. I would have to give the credit to my Lord and savoir Jesus Christ.. My core verse that guides me is John 15:13. Greater love hath no one than this ,than to lay thier life down for thier friends. God “gave” His son, The Son “gave” His life. If Christ is who we follow then giving is the evidence!!

  6. I would have to give the credit to my Lord and savoir Jesus Christ.. My core verse that guides me is John 15:13. Greater love hath no one than this ,than to lay thier life down for thier friends. God “gave” His son, The Son “gave” His life. If Christ is who we follow then giving is the evidence!!

  7. Most recently the person who has been teaching me generosity is my friend, Benjamin. I have never met anyone so willing to give of his own for the benefit of others. He trusts God to provide for him, so he has no hesitations to give to others. His parents told me that when he was even just a little boy he wanted to always stop and give to anyone who looked like they were in need. (His dad jokingly told me he was so glad that Benjamin was giving away Benjamin’s money and not his dad’s anymore.) His life is such a constant example to me and has even convicted me as to how much I hold onto for my own security rather than finding my security in the Lord. Benjamin’s actions speak so loud he doesn’t even need to speak the words he does about giving. Being generous in giving not just of money but of time, resources, love, etc, is also so rewarding because it follows Christ example of giving. God gave us His son, an ultimate sacrifice, all we have to give back to him is ALL of us, which includes showing generosity to others. I also personally think that the way we know we’re giving generously is if it’s a sacrifice to give. I know I am not to this point yet, but I want to be there.

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