Wisdom of Marion Vol 1.20

“Wise people live in wealth and luxury, but unwise people spend their money as fast as they get it.”

(Proverbs 21:20 Today’s English Version)

“What is old becomes new, what is new becomes old. Just because it’s old doesn’t mean it isn’t useful.”

Our culture values and praises the new. We are told we must buy a new car, new computer, new appliances, new clothes, even a new wife or husband, and now plastic surgery to get rid of old body parts.

Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate that our society is known for being innovative and we wouldn’t have many of things that are supposedly to make our lives easier.

But, do we actually use something until it’s finished?

I’m reminded of that Best Buy TV commercial I’ve seen recently where people just bought a new flat-screen TV, computer or cell phone and they see an advertisement saying a newer model of what they bought has just come out.  And now the people feel bad for buying an item that is now outdated.

I have to write that’s a funny commercial, but it does show us the cycle we live in as consumers.

Most people are only keeping their computers, cell phones, and even cars for two-to-three years and then we are swayed into buying a newer version of that item.

My wife has teased me over the years about my counter-culture habit of keeping things until I can’t use them anymore.  My car is ten years old with 135,000 miles (I’m planning to get another 100,000 miles out of it…hopefully!) and the computer I’m using for this blog is 8 years old and I plan to use until I can’t anymore.

I told her there’s a freedom in not wanting to buy the latest and greatest thing on the market.  Unfortunately, I haven’t fully convinced her…yet.

Well, if you don’t take it from me how about Sam Walton, founder of Wal-Mart. He drove an old-pickup truck and lived in a modest home in Arkansas during his years of running Wal-Mart. How about Warren Buffett?  The great investor, who still lives in same house in Omaha, Nebraska he bought over 40 years ago.

It’s interesting that the very wealthy don’t follow the buy-discard-buy cycle that most of society does. Maybe they know something that we don’t.

I know I’m writing against the grain, but there’s a freedom in not having to buy the latest, newest do-hickey. I hope we all learn just because something is old doesn’t mean it isn’t useful.


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