Sunday, 14 June 2009
The story of the pencil
The Pencil Maker took the pencil aside, just before putting him into the box.
“There are 5 things you need to know,” he told the pencil, “Before I send you out into the world. Always remember them and never forget, and you will become the best pencil you can be.”
“One: You will be able to do many great things, but only if you allow yourself to be held in someone’s hand.”
“Two: You will experience a painful sharpening from time to time, but you’ll need it to become a better pencil.”
“Three: You will be able to correct any mistakes you might make.”
“Four: The most important part of you will always be what’s inside.”
“And Five: On every surface you are used on, you must leave your mark. No matter what the condition, you must continue to write.”
The pencil understood and promised to remember, and went into the box with purpose in its heart. It was shipped to a household in Britain, where it served its owner well on the desk. However, the pencil was always left out of the limelight by the collection of shiny new fountain pens.
The fountain pens laughed at the poor pencil, “look at him, shaved and chewed by the owner. He would never do such a thing to us!” The pencil grew ashamed, for he knew that he was no match for the beautiful fountain pens. Over the years, he was used and sharpened countless times, and his once proud wooden frame has been reduced to a dirty and short stump. His tattered pride was barely held in place by what the Pencil Maker told him before.
The war had come to Britain, and the pencil’s owner was conscripted to the air force as a pilot. The pencil and the fountain pens were left in disuse, waiting for the day the owner would return. It was months before that happened, and the owner came home to meet his wife with the grave news that he was selected for a mission over enemy skies.
When it was time for him to say goodbye, the owner reached into the drawer to pick up a writing instrument for his dangerous mission. He reached for the proud fountain pens, but they were all clogged up from the long periods of disuse. His wife picked up the old pencil and passed it to him.
“Take this pencil with you. It is the most dependable writing instrument you have, and you need something that will never fail on you at the most critical moment. The fountain pens will leak at such high pressures in the cockpit anyway.”
The pencil followed the owner into the heart of the war, flying over enemy lines and dropping bombs over the cities. The owner charted the squadron’s maps with the pencil, making sure that everyone accomplished the mission and returned home safely. The enemy was brought to its knees and the war was over soon.
The owner was released from the air force conscription, and upon his return home placed the pencil back among the fountain pens. There was barely a stump left of him, but yet the other pens knew that they had someone special among them. The pencil has fulfilled the destiny that the Pencil Maker had set.
Know that you are a special person and only you can fulfill the purpose to which you were born to accomplish. Never allow yourself to get discouraged and think that your life is insignificant and cannot make a change.