Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Parable Of The Pencil – The Pencil Story

To KPLI students (Group K1.1)…
Please give your personal response to the parable below in not more than 150 words.

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.

Now replace the pencil with you.  Always remember them and never forget, and you will become the best person you can be.

One: You will be able to do many great things, but only if you allow yourself to be held in God's hand. And allow other human beings to access you for the many gifts you possess.

Two: You will experience a painful sharpening from time to time, by going through various problems in life, but you'll need it to become a stronger person.

Three: You will be able to correct any mistakes you might make.

Four: The most important part of you will always be what's on the inside.

And Five: On every surface you walk through, you must leave your mark. No matter what the situation, you must continue to do your duties.

Allow this parable on the pencil to encourage you to 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.


  1. This parable which is also known as an allegory, if I’m not wrong, reminds me of myself as at this juncture, I am deliberately dealing with a conflict with regards to my rigorous life change. Having said that, I have to allow myself to be held in God’s hands and I am sure that there must be wisdom for everything that happens in the world. Yes I would probably be facing for some struggles, personally, but the various obstacles will make me a stronger person with vigorous endurance. The experience and knowledge that I will acquire will evidently ramp up my characters and ameliorate my personalities and skills towards becoming an admirable if not an impeccable teacher, God wills!
    I adore the forth value cited in this parable as for me, it is very true; what is the most important for oneself is the inside. I believe in myself and I can ascertain that I am sincere and honest with what I am doing. No matter how the others perceive of me, I choose to be myself and never be anyone else. As what is suggested in this parable as the fifth value, on every surface that I will walk through and no matter how the plight will be, I have to eventually continue with my duties; a trainee teacher as being a teacher is emphatically my passion and yet to become my prowess. I have only less than one year to obtain as much experience and knowledge as I could from the lecturers and I will be doing robust if I do it right.
    Now that the going gets tough, rest assured that I will get the tough gets going! I am born to build my own brand and bring the wind of change and so, to leave the mark as what the pencils always did, without fail!

    Faiza Mat Saaid

  2. Never ever imagined that life as a teacher is comparable to a pencil. The five things listed above kept me wondering for a long time and questions were spinning around my head. I doubted with sweaty palms if by any chance I'm going to be a great teacher. And before that even crossed my mind, I was having second thoughts to continue this diploma.

    The consistent discouraging remarks and negative vibes that were circulating around me caused many disappointments and stressful moments. My will power and strength is burying my weaknesses and fear. I really look high upon all 5 values in this parable that reflects a good teacher/classroom leader. Leaving myself under the care of the Big Man, the bad & good experiences that I will face will definitely make me a stronger, better and a wiser human being. As a teacher, my roles are expanded into many different branches. From a teacher who teaches, to a ‘mother’ that nurtures every individual to their best potential.

    Having said that, I will leave my mark and perform the best I can in my duties as a teacher. Now I began to realize what great sacrifices and contribution were given by my former teachers. And the highest of all compliments, what great human beings they are in shaping each and every individual to become great lawyers, doctors, engineers etc…

    As a closure, I would bear in mind these values as they are not just words of encouragement but also as a reflection to wherever I go and pour my contribution as a great teacher.

    By: Kavendeep Kaur a/p Terwander Singh
    K1.1 (KPLI TESL)

  3. The story pencil is an inspirational story for everyone. If we replace our self with pencil, we can deliberately picture our self with a conflicts and obstacles that we had to face in our daily life. The story also a reality of life, about how we manage to look in something and the qualities one has to handle it. The first quality in the pencil always mentioned to us about a one’s capability of doing something great in life and realizes that there is a hand guiding their steps and ways, which was our inner self, which meant that everything depends on our self whom has the control. Having that control, religious aspect might help to strengthen those inner values. Another quality that an individual need most is to learn to bear the ruins, pains and sorrows to become a great person in life as a pencil also need to suffer a little to make it sharpen. The third quality, a person should be able to correct their mistakes which always help us to keep us on the road to justice. The fourth value that is really matters in a pencil is not its wooden exterior but the graphite inside which tells us the importance of our inner values. These good values such as sincerity and trustworthiness will always guide us into a correct path of life. The fifth value, , tells us no matter how tough the situation are, we should be able to complete our duties without hesitation and doubts. Lastly, the parable of pencil, encourages me to be a strong person and tells me that everyone is a special person and have different abilities in the way they are. Everything depends on an individual willingness to fulfill the purpose to which we born to accomplish. As a teacher, these five qualities are very important to me to provide an excellent service to students and nations. It also stressed that, we should never discourage ours elf and think that our life is insignificant and can’t make a change….

    By : V.Kavitha Vasudevan
    TESL – K1.1

  4. When I read the first two lines, it’s very obvious that the pencil is a metaphor for us humans. The first part of the parable lists out the five virtues that a pencil, thus us humans should have. That part is pretty self explanatory, so I consider the later half rather extraneous and unnecessary. That aside, the five virtues make me reflect on myself; had I been a worthy Christian, what had I done to be a good Christian and did I accept the challenges in life gracefully as something from God to test my mettle?
    Really, as I consider the circumstances in my life, I realize that I am too headstrong and instead of merely floating down the river in the direction that God had decided, I tried to bifurcate and create my own path. This had created lots of anguish within my soul as the separation from God could be the loneliest thing, even more so than the separation of the stillborn from the womb of its mother per the Freudian school of thought. This parable is about letting God controls the steering wheel of your life, i.e. you extinguish your fiery spirit and meekly follow the will of God. When you are one with the will of God, inter alia, you’ll find your vocation in life and become His tool to make the world a better place.
    Before I get carried away, I’ll stop here and I apologize for exceeding the word limit.

    By: Ling Leong Sing

  5. Searching for destiny is not an easy task because many of people in this world had spent almost entire of their life searching for the reasons of being. There are many inspirational stories about people changing their career from a well paid and well known into a completely different career. I believe that this is one of the mysterious aspects of God's works. We can plan to travel from A to B but the travel’s outcome had been destined. We might reach Destination B, got stuck or reach C instead. But what matters is our way in implementing the plan. It will not be perfect every time but we learn the best from mistakes because they are great teachers. It will be such a nice thought that someday someone will notice our act and follow our teaching if we act as the pencil in the parable.

  6. In my point of view, i would like to say, pencil is such a good parable that we can use to describe us as a human being...It is because it shows how important every pencil to the book that it have written before as well as human being in this world...Every single person also have their own destiny or journey that has been written by God but that does not mean, we can not have or achieve what we want to reach in future..Actually, every thing is on our hand to choose what we want to be and please make sure that our goal is not only for ourselves but must reflect others as well. No one can change themselves unless they willing and make the changes for themselves…thank you


    KPLI (K1.1)

    I believe that there is a purpose to why I was born in this world and with all the qualities that God had given to me. Everyone has special quality but without God’s willing nothing can we do.
    What a wonderful parable. In this world, to be a successful person we also need guidance from other people. As a human being, we are curious about everything but just remember curiosity killed the cat and try not to learn it by the hard way. Sometimes we experienced ups and downs in our life but that make us become stronger. This is because we can learn from past experience. Besides, remember to stand with your principle and do not easily fool by other thing.
    In a nutshell, you have to know how to distinguish bad and good. Like the saying goes garbage in, garbage out. Then you can leave your mark.

  8. It is quite a touching parable and it is remind us about “a teacher life”. Each of us should answer this question; are we ready enough to wit stand the burdens, pains, sadness, frustrations and pressures that await us?. All eyes are on us, all of our movements, behaviors, and knowledge’s will be judged. There is no turning back and there will be no time to remorse. If we can swallow it up, we can change the world as well the future. Never give up and always move on. Don’t ever cling on the remorse. The children are out there waiting for us as a teacher to paint their future and to guide them to become a better person. All we need to do is, giving it all out as best as we can, only then we can feel the satisfaction in ourselves. Seeing our student success that’s make us a greater teacher.


  9. The story tells us about how being a pencil can be no difference from us human. All things in this world has been created for its purpose and intention. We have to be able to give our best even though there are many ups and downs in our life.
    In order to be a great person, the important thing is we need to believe in God and let Him to hold us because everything happen has its own reasons. Besides, let others knows and access our talent and capability. So that, we know far we can move on to be successful person. To achieve our aim, we will encounter many challenging situation either it is bitter or sweet. As we know, "no pain, no gain". The important things, remember that all this are begin from ourselves. What we have in our heart, either we want to be or not to be.
    As a teacher, no matter where we teach, no matter how far the place, how you feel uneasy about the whole situation, it is our duties to accept the nature of our job. Things might come not as they were but we must not let our own guard down and continue to give the best to the students.

    TESL (K1.1)

  10. I can relate myself closely to the pencil in the parable. I wasn't very sure of my decision to join KPLI programme. Putting myself in God’s hand had brought me here. I can feel that this is the right path for me as I couldn't stop being happy and smiled most of the time during my first week here.
    The second value means a lot to me. Sometimes, I felt hindered by many personal problems that i have. But as experience is the father of wisdom, I became more independent and learn to think positively to every obstacle that I faced. I believe as human, we learned by mistakes and if we can’t change it, we have to repair the damage and avoid doing the same mistake again. Above all things, I agree that the inner side is the most important part of oneself. We have to be true and honest to ourselves and appreciate all the qualities that we have to be a better person everyday. Lastly, as a future teacher, I am determined to prepare myself for any kind of situation ahead. I know it’s going to be challenging as always, but if there’s nothing being ventured, nothing can be gain. I’ll seize every opportunity to gain as much knowledge and experience as I can and be an excellent teacher one day!

    K 1.1

  11. What a sweet parable with a beautiful meaning. I feel touched after reading this pencil story. The message is so strong and so true. As I read through the meaningful values, I suddenly remember my mom's words where she always motivate and encourage me to become a great person in this life.
    I know that everything happens for a reason so there is never a reason to give up. Whenever I feel depressed or guilty, there is an inner spark in me which is light. This light is the reflection of God. Always believe that I am now is what God wants me to be and it is not an accident.
    The pencil story makes me realize that how grateful I am for every little thing that God has gifted to us where I can experience a painful and wonderful life in order to grow up, make me become invulnerable person and appreciate what I have now.
    Let the sun illuminates the word that I could not find..


  12. What a great and sweet parable. When I read this, it reminds me that to be a teacher is not an easy thing. You yourself decide what are you wanted to be and the power is your hand. No one can change themselves unless they’re willing and want to do so. Even though, some people might think that teacher is an easy profession but for or me, to be a great teacher, I must put all my efforts and well prepared in terms of physical, mental and spiritual. All these meaningful values in the parable make me become stronger and ready to be a great teacher in the future.

  13. First thing that come in my mind when I read this parable is, why does someone need to sacrifice their personal interest for others satisfaction? I do not know how to make a great words about it. This parable is great. For me, this parable teaches us a lot of things that we didn’t realize what about to happen in teacher’s life. As a teacher or a person that born to accomplish the purpose of their life, there will be a lot of things that they may take or encounter. Share things or knowledge that u have, adapt with new knowledge by sharpen your skill. No matter what happen, we need to continue the tasks that been given to us to fulfill in this world. If we take a deep look into the message that shown in this parable, we know that all of us in this world need to know that all of our mistake can be corrected. Now, to become a stronger person in all aspects, we need to learn to give and take.

    By me,
    KPLI (TESL) K1.1

  14. Comment;
    Parable of the pencil

    Personal opinion;

    Based on the article…I feel like I became new man in this earth. Is a nice article, I realize that before we serve others we should serve ourselves first in order to know what we should do. Meaning to say, based on the parable of the pencil we should equipped with the good values and advised from the older, experts ,friends or even children if we found it is useful for our life and job. I am happy to read this article because it gives a motivation in order to improve my skills, experiences and ethics. “Sometimes you win and sometimes you lose” it is a phrases that motivated me to survived in this earth. Because when we feel that we are loser, mostly people suicide and when we feel we are the winner we became arrogant. So, it is based on ourselves to decide what we want to be, and if we want to be a good man we should have a discipline to maintain the ethics in the workplace and to be a human that will not be forgotten by the society or even new generation we should have something good to contribute and that is teaching....i like to be a teacher!!!!!!!!!

    Mr. Dustin

  15. This parable which is pencil is suitable to represent a teacher. As a teacher, we have many responsibilities not just for our own self but also for others. We cannot made decision just for our own good but need to consider people around us.

    Like this pencil, it needs to be sharpening in order to perform better. What happen if this pencil not be sharpened, can it be use? Yes, but the result produce may be less quality. Same like teacher’s duties, we should sacrifice our time, money, comfort in order to give full commitment and contribute to the society.

    Whatever you said, whatever knowledge you gave to your student, will be your mark until the end of life because each of teacher’s word will guide their student. Work hard, improve yourself, don’t let negative things control you and the important things is learn from past, so that you can become a better person.


  16. This parable touched me for the first time I read it. As I put myself as a Pencil, my perception of being a teacher has grown deeper. In my personal point of view, being a teacher is a special vocation. It is not a job well-suited to everyone, as we would be facing students coming from different socio economic backgrounds as well as having different learning abilities.

    Being a teacher, I will also be able to correct every mistakes as well as to leave an awesome mark especially to the students who didn't understand any subject in class. Futhermore, teaching someone is often like solving a problem, what works to help one student often does not work for another student. Explanations often need to be done several different ways, with different types of analogies so everyone can understand. Therefore, I need to learn a topic better before start teaching. I recalled my first experience teaching as a temporary teacher, I thought that I knew what I was doing. However, the students questions just make me dig deeper and learn more.

    As a conclusion, this parable really inspires me to be a good teacher in future.

    K 1.1 (TESL)

  17. From my point of view, after reading this parable, I found out some good values that can be applied in our daily lives. Pencil is a metaphor for us humans and pencil maker as God, our creator. God has great plans for each and every one of us. No matter what my vocation would be, I would carry out my duties at my best, regardless what my careers entail. God grants me the potentials so that I could use them for betterment and thus I should share them with others. In life, there are trials and tribulations I must undertake, which would help me to become much stronger in person. Mistakes are a part of being human. My opinion is, not all mistakes can be mended, and thus I would not brood over them but try not to repeat them in future. Our inner being is the most important of all. It shows who I am and it does affect others’ impressions on me. To leave mark anywhere and everywhere we go may sound easy to some, but to really have it marked and change someone’s life, that would be a real-life task, and it’s a challenge that I would have to face.

    Grace Ikie Anak Jannis
    K1.1 TESL

  18. the parable of the pencil actually reflect our self as a human being. every single thing, that happened in our life has been destined by God, and we as a humble human being must accept it in a positive point of view.

    Everybody have their own dream, and ambition in their life, so do i. but, to reach the goal, we need to strive to excel.

    talk to the other hand, i believe becoming a teacher is a right path for me, myself and i. it's not just about teaching itself, it is about a moment of truth in teaching profession. i knew that I'm a special person and only me can fulfill the purpose to which i was born to accomplish.-xoxo

    izwan norazmi
    tesl k1.1

  19. From My Point Of Views

    “You will experience a painful sharpening from time to time, by going through various problems in life, but you'll need it to become a stronger person.”

    This is the best quotation I ever read in my whole life that in just few seconds had triggered my sense of appreciation towards life which is always challenging but still is always worth giving.

    However, the extent in which the writer quoted that the most important part is what’s on the inside is a bit ambiguous. Maybe one good example can be included to support the main idea. For instance, to be a good teacher, the crucial part is pertaining to his or her knowledge and approaching skills.

    In the other hand, how can we know the purpose to which we were born to accomplish? What are the major indicators? In my opinion, knowing our personal strengths in terms of interpersonal skills and natural talents determine our own future intentions.

    But above all, I’m looking forward to read more motivating stories just like this piece. Keep going with this!

    Sarah J P Guntavid

  20. Life is not a bed of roses. Trials and difficulties will come daily in all forms of disguise. Making a mistake is unavoidable. Failure is a must have. Things might not always follow what we expect them to be. Sometimes you are on top, sometimes you are at the bottom of the wheel. Life is unpredictable. Faith, on the hand, gives us the security that whatever situation that we are dealing with, we are in the hands of The One who gives breathes to all livings. Faith gives us hope that no matter how screwed-up we are in life, there will always be a second chance. The trace of our mistake might haunt us, but that should not let us down. Instead, show the world that we are ready to change from the inside out, even if it requires us to start from scratch again. I believe that we are all special in our own ways. Don’t ever let others and our own minds play trick on us telling us the opposite. We should take control of our emotion and not our emotion takes control over us. Once we know that we deserve to be ‘here’, we are special because of who we are, we are blessed to live our lives according our own ways, now, we are ready to become an impact-maker!

    Holinson Emang Wan
    K1.1 TESL