Every pencil is different

Sharpening a pencil with a knifeI enjoy making birthday cards by hand. I use colored pencils. I always sharpen them with a small Xacto knife, to maximize the lead from each pencil. If I used a pencil sharpener, I would not notice the different types of wood that make up each pencil. Even though my colored pencils all the same brand, the wood of some is harder than the wood of others.

We are all made differently. Even though we know that, deep down we expect people to think and act the same as us. But we need to give each other lots of room to breathe – and exercise the gifts that were designed into who we are.

I met with a pastor friend last weekend, and he said another pastor did not understand why people liked to communicate with phone text messages. That pastor’s view on the subject went far enough that he was in the zone of judging people who texted. (That was dangerous territory – since communicating via text message is a significant avenue for the majority of people under the age of 40.)

In 1 Corinthians 12, Paul writes: “In fact, some parts of the body that seem weakest and least important are actually the most necessary. And the parts we regard as less honorable are those we clothe with the greatest care. So we carefully protect those parts that should not be seen, while the more honorable parts do not require this special care. So God has put the body together such that extra honor and care are given to those parts that have less dignity. This makes for harmony among the members, so that all the members care for each other.”

Sensitivity. That’s the best way to treat others. We can’t go wrong if we honor others more than ourselves.

(Paul Merrill writes here every First Friday.)

For 7×7, see 3.2.12

One thought on “Every pencil is different

  1. Joseph Ruiz

    Paul, I constantly battle judging others always seems to come back to that Log/speck thing! I feel the tension of wanting to benefit from the iron sharpening experience until the other iron shows up kind of like wanting to be trim while eating and sitting 😉 Thanks for the reminder.
    Enjoy the weekend.


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