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In Other Words...

A Research Service Of Facts & Humor For Christian Leaders

June 2017 ~ Issue 1

EXAMPLE: The late dancing legend, Fred Astaire (1899-1997) said, "The hardest job kids face today is learning good manners without seeing any."  Children will always benefit more from models than monologues. Beaumont Enterprise, 5/18/17, p.2A

FAMILY: At the age of 31, Jacqueline Kennedy (1929-1994) became the third youngest first lady in U.S. history when JFK was sworn in as the 35th President on January 20, 1961.  Their second child, John Kennedy, Jr., was born just a few weeks after the election so Mrs. Kennedy was a stark contrast to her older predecessors.  Early in the process she stated her priorities were to take care of the President and their family, and then added, "If you bungle raising your children, I don't think whatever else you do well matters very much."  Regrets invariably follow any parent who believes otherwise.

FATHERHOOD: John Perry Barlow was a close friend of John Kennedy, Jr., (1960-1999) and the one who gave him his first flying lessons.  In 2016, Barlow joined a collection of dear friends as they remembered the man they knew and loved.  The former Grateful Dead lyricist noted something unique that Kennedy once told him.  JFK said, "Everybody expects me to be a great man, but plenty of great men were not particularly great at home.  Even my father was no model.  I think it would be a more interesting challenge to be a good man."  In our pursuit of greatness we can mistakenly overlook the high value of being good, especially where & when it matters most. People, 8/1/16, p.44

FATHERHOOD: The U.S. Open will begin on June 15th, but as it stands now, Phil Mickelson won't be participating in one of golf's most important events.  The famous lefty informed the U.S. Golf Association that he will most likely withdraw because the first round at Erin Hills in Wisconsin occurs on the same day his daughter will graduate from High School in Carlsbad, California.  Amanda is the class president and will give the commencement speech.  It's the only major tournament Mickelson hasn't won and he's finished in second place a record six times.  He said, "Obviously it's a tournament that I want to win the most... But this is one of those moments where you look back on life and you just don't want to miss it.  I'll be really glad that I was there and present."  He'll wait until the last minute to withdraw in case weather delays provide an opportunity for him to play, or if something happens to cause the graduation ceremony to be moved.  Ironically, the closest he came to winning the U.S. Open was in 1999 when Amanda's birth was imminent.  Mickelson wore a beeper throughout the tournament and explained he was going to lay down his clubs and race to his wife's side if she went into labor with their first child.  He lost by one stroke when Payne Stewart famously made a 20-foot putt for par on the 72nd hole.  Stewart embraced Mickelson and said, "Good luck with the baby.  There's nothing greater than being a father."  How true! USA Today, 6/5/17, p.6C

FATHERHOOD: May 26, 2017 marked the 50th anniversary of The Beatles' landmark album, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club.  Such occasions put the iconic band back in the spotlight for their influential role in the music industry.  Sadly, the famed writer of so many hits had a different kind of influence at home.  In his first marriage, John Lennon fathered a son, but Julian knew little about the famous man who abandoned his mother and him.  Julian Lennon would later say, "The only thing he taught me was how not to be a father."  Every man makes his mistakes, but may we never give our sons a reason to say the same thing about us. The Year The Music Died, Dwight Rounds, 2007, p.45

PERSPECTIVE: A quick search through the Amazon web site yields twenty pages of products emblazoned with Vivian Greene's advice, "Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass.  It's about learning how to dance in the rain."  That's good counsel.

PURPOSE: A dozen years after dropping out of Harvard to found Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg returned to the campus on May 25, 2017 with the commencement address.  He and Bill Gates are two of the college's most famous dropouts, so Zuckerberg began by saying, "If I get through this speech today, it will be the first time I actually finish something at Harvard."  After the laughter subsided, the 33-year-old billionaire moved into his speech and said, "To keep our society moving forward, we have a generational challenge - to not only create new jobs, but create a renewed sense of purpose.  It's not enough to have purpose yourself.  You also have to create a sense of purpose for others."  A big part of fatherhood is fulfilling the purpose for which God created you while help-ing each member of your family do the same with their lives. USA Today, 5/26/17, p.3B

PURPOSE: Douglas Weiss has succinctly stated, "You are God's solution for someone or something on this earth."  A man's family may be the very place where that is truer than anywhere else. Clean, Douglas Weiss, 2013, p.25



FATHERHOOD: All five kids were tucked in bed when Billy suddenly started wailing.  The 3-year-old had somehow swallowed a penny and was convinced he was about to die.  Kate's husband figured the only way to calm their inconsolable son was with a little sleight of hand.  He pulled a penny from his pocket and pretended to pull it out of Billy's ear.  The trick worked like...magic.  Billy melted with relief and lit up with excitement.  After a moment, he grabbed the penny from his dad's hand and quickly swallowed it before exuberantly squealing, "Do it again!" Reader's Digest, May 2014, p.16

FATHERHOOD: The Zits comic showed Jeremy on the phone telling his friend why he was delayed.  He said he needed to get some money first and was waiting for the ATM to reboot.  His friend asked how long it'd take, and then the panel showed Jeremy looking at his dad napping on the couch.  He replied, "Hard to say... he had a heavy lunch."  Dads sometimes feel like an ATM struggling to reboot. Beaumont Enterprise, 5/29/17, p.8B

STRENGTHS: Every man has a wheelhouse where he's at his best, and then we all have our Achilles heel as well.  In his recent book, Son of Bum, Wade Phillips recounts a story about his famous dad coaching Hall of Famer, Earl Campbell.  In preseason practice, the players were required to run a mile to see if they were in shape.  Campbell was never a miler so he just couldn't make the four laps.  The reporters were all over it and pressing to see what was going to happen to the star running back that ran over players like a bulldozer.  Bum Phillips squelched all the anxious sports critics with his comical reply, "If it's third and a mile, we won't give it to him." Beaumont Enterprise, 5/4/17, p.1B

IN OTHER WORDS... began in 1991 and is produced by Dr. Raymond McHenry, Senior Pastor of the Westgate Memorial Baptist Church in Beaumont, Texas.  Subscribers receive full access to our Web site of over 5,000 illustrations PLUS two email issues per month filled with fascinating facts, quotes, humor, and spiritual illustrations from headline news.  All content is copyrighted.  Visit to start a new subscription or send inquiries to:

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