“Have you ever been excited with a pencil?” 

“Have you ever thanked God for that simple piece of wood, clay, and graphite?”

If you have never expressed appreciation for something as simple, yet as important, as a pencil. Perhaps it is long overdue. 

“Wow, you are crazy,” you might say. “Thank God for a pencil.” “That is sort of absurd,” you add.

Speaking of appreciation let’s talk about it. For instance, let’s talk about appreciation in the west, … say the U. S., as compared to appreciation in Africa, … say in Malawi. 

It is interesting to see and hear the observations people often have about Africa.  Some are not complimentary. In fact, they seem downright negative. This is sad, yet understandable. The news media seldom reports a good, positive, heart-warming story about this part of the world. Guess they think the only thing that will impress us, their viewership, is the morbid, painful, evil, and bad. Well, perhaps it is time we say “STOP. Enough! Tell us something good for a change.” 

My 30-years of experience in Africa has been exceptionally positive all the way. Not perfect, but a whole lot closer to it than I experience in much of the rest of the world. 

It is time we ask to see the good. There is a lot of it. An example is this video clip. It probably won’t be played on the nightly, prime time news. I want you to see and listen to these children in Malawi singing a song about a gift they have just received. A pencil! And they are thanking God with a song of appreciation they can have a pencil for school.

Please send your donated pencils to the Malawi Project. Let’s keep the children of Malawi singing. Malawi Project, 2421 Golfside Drive, Lebanon, Indiana 46052

                                                By Richard Stephens, co-Founder of Malawi Project

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