The story of a pencil

12-02-2010

A child was watching hiw grandmother writting a letter. At some point, he asked her:

-Are you writting a story about us? Is it a story about me?

His grandmother stopped writting, smiled and said to her grandson:

-I am writting a story about you. However, what is more important than the word i am using, is the pencil i am writting it with. Someday, when you grow up, i really hope you become like it.

The intrigued boy looked at the pencil but saw nothing special about it.
-It is just like any other pencil i have ever seen, said to his grandmother.

-Well, it all depends on how you see things. The pencil has five qualities, which if you manage to obtain, will make you a person always at peace with the world.

First quality: you are capable of achieving great things, but you must never forget that there is a hand guiding your steps. We call that hand «God», and He always guides you according to His will.

Second quality: every now and then, i have to stop writing and use a sharpner. That makes the pencil suffer a little, but afterwards, it’s much sharper. So you too, must learn to bear some pains and sorrows, because they will make you a better person.

Third quality: the pencil always allows us to use an eraser to rub out any mistakes we make. You should realise that correcting something you did wrong is not necessarily a bad thing. It’s important for keeping you on the road to justice.

Fourth quality: what really matters in a pencil is not its wooden exterior, but the graphite on the inside. So you should always pay attention to what is happening inside you.

Finally, the pencil’s fifth quality: it always leaves a mark. In the same way, you should know that everything you do in your life, will leave a mark. So try to be conscious of that in your every action.

The above story is an excerpt from Paulo Coelho’s «Like the Flowing River»

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