Taken from the book of the same name, The Parable of the Pencil,which was sent to me by a seminar participant-turned-friend who insists that I am talented as a storyteller, a motivational speaker and inspirational trainer and that I must share it. I cannot count the number of times I have told the story and each time, I can see how inspired the audience gets.


When the Pencil was created, the Pencil Creator told the pencils “I am going to share five things with you, and if you listen to me, you will go out into the world and you will be the best pencil you can ever be.”

“First, you are created to do great things, but you must be prepared to do the work, practice and let others utilize your ability by allowing them to hold you in their hands. Only then, will you be able to create and do great things.”

”Second, you will make mistakes in your life but you must learn from your mistakes, correct them and move on to continue writing.”

“Third, always remember that the most important part of you is whatever is inside you, not what is on the outside.”

“Fourth, from time to time, life will give you a painful sharpening. This is necessary so that you stay sharp in order to continue to do your work and be a better pencil.”

“And lastly, no matter how short you become or how difficult the writing surface gets, you must stay true to your purpose and continue to write so that when you are gone, you will leave behind wisdom and legacies that others can benefit from.”

The Pencils understood, promising to remember and went out into the world fully understanding the Pencil Creator’s purpose.

~ Author Unknown ~
Adapted and modified by Billy Kueek

I use this story as the cover story because we, are all like the pencil.

First, all of us are created to do great things, but we must allow others to utilize our talents, our beings and we must be prepared to do the work so that we can potentially produce great things.

Second, like the pencil, every one of us makes mistakes. However, we must learn from the mistakes and continue on. There is no failure, only feedback and our results will remain the same unless we learn from them and do things differently.

Third, our value is not determined by our valuables. The most important part of us is whatever that is inside – our mind, our spirit and our body. What is it that we do to nurture and strengthen ourselves on the inside, our intellect, our passion, directions, intentions and inspirations?

Fourth, we may experience painful moments, negativity, challenges, obstacles and tough situations but these are sharpenings that we have to go through, like the pencil. We must gain from the sharpenings to become better, tougher, smarter and stronger. Tough times don’t last, only tough people do.

And lastly, like the pencil who experiences itself becoming short and writing surfaces getting difficult, we must acknowledge our weaknesses and accept that situations can get out of control. However, we must continue to strive and forge forward with our purposes and what we set out to do. Only then, can we leave behind wisdom and legacies that others can benefit from.

Like my dear friend W. Mitchell’s best-selling book title states, “It’s not what happens to you, it’s what you do about it.”

You can get a copy of the book, ENGAGE: The Parable of the Pencil & Other Empowering Stories online from www.BillyKueek.com/products. (Available in hard copy or pdf)