Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Pen and Pencil ... Making a Point -- Peter A. Black


Need to remember something a telephone number or grocery item you might require to pick up on the way home from the office or a birthday card for Aunt Harriet? You need a piece of paper and a pen or pencil – either will do. 

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Oh, but I have my lists and birthday reminders on a computer calendar program, you may protest. Or, I’ve got all that information instantly available with a stroke of my thumb on my smart-phone. 
Yeah, but what if your computer breaks down, or there’s an electricity power cut, or your mobile phone battery dies without warning? Pens and pencils faithfully stand by – soldiers on guard to save the day.
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What marvellous inventions pens and pencils are – portable, pointed, and practical instruments of writing! In this age of all things high-tech there is still a practical and prominent place for these perfect cousins – even if humble and homely. 
As for pens, they’ve been used for millennia. Whether the form of pen is sharpened reed or feathered quill dipped in a mixture of soot and water and whatever else, or a platinum-plated nib in settings of gold, or the popular ball-point, pens are and will still be in use for whatever generations are to come, I’m sure. 
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Pens and pencils are for writing. I thank God that He chose to use the pen to eternal effect, since, over a period of 1,600 years in the writing of the original Scripture manuscripts, ranging from Genesis to The Revelation, about 40 “holy men of God wrote as they were moved by the  Holy Spirit!” (2 Peter 1:21). And now today, God’s Word – the Bible, is still the world’s bestseller, printed annually in the multi-millions of copies in hundreds of languages. It is available for use on our personal computers, and smart phones too!  
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Since my youth and long before I was led into the ministry as a vocation, I made it my business to read, consider and memorize portions of the Bible. This has helped develop a frame of reference for life and living which has seen me through many a challenge. 
The humble pen and pencil played a part, as in my youth I would write out a verse or two and carry them with me for subsequent reference in memorizing and meditating on their relevance to my life. I still mark up my current Bible with pen and pencil, highlighting portions of interest and writing thoughts in the margins.
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Would you like to try it? Take, for example the words of Jesus in John 5:24 (NIV):  “I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life.” 
That’s a call to exercise faith and live it. Writing verses out, memorizing and meditating on them, asking God’s help to enable us to apply their truths to our lives in faith, can be really helpful.
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Our receiving the divine assurance that our name is written in heaven and that our citizenship is there, is something to write home about, eh?
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© Peter A. Black, 2012.
Peter A. Black is a freelance writer in Southwestern Ontario, and author of a children's / family book, "Parables from the Pond." An earlier version of this article was published in his weekly column in the September 12, 2012 issue of The Watford Guide-Advocate, and has been adapted here. His articles have appeared in 50 Plus Contact and testimony, and several newspapers in Ontario. 

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2 comments:

violet said...

Great list, Peter. The computer will never replace pens and pencils with me either. I think I need that tactile connection with the paper to really connect my thoughts to it.

Peter Black said...

Thanks Violet.
As technology changes and access to older data becomes difficult because of obsolescence, hard copy, where it exists saves the day.
I'm glad the Scripture MSS and the Dead Sea Scrolls weren't in some fandangled form. ;)
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