sharpened-pencils-featured-w740x493Is there anything better than a freshly sharpened pencil, a brand-new blank notebook, and a comfortably cluttered table?

Other than the pile of books I have to read, no.

This time of year is some sort of balm to the nine-year-old writer in me, the one who still sees possibilities and promise when she sees a box of pencils. It’s opportunity unbounded when I smell the smooth paper of a new notebook and think of what will fill its pages. I can barely keep from stocking up on all sorts of things, including pens and markers and crayons.

For some reason, my kids always think these things are for them.

Don’t they know that I have lots to do? I have lists to make, dreams to share, and projects to accomplish!

It’s the beginning of a new year, one where I can be whoever I want. I can recreate Sarah as a way better person. She can be cool and less nerdy and just more: more of everything she should have been, could have been, would have been.

But why would I want to do that? I’ve been out of school for years, I hardly even write with pencils anymore, and most of my work is on a screen.

Even so, there’s hope in the air when I see the school supply aisles in the stores. Maybe this will be the year that I’m a better instrument for God’s will. Maybe I’ll be like that fresh new pencil: sharp and full of possibility. Maybe I’ll last the way the best pencils do: all the way through the year, getting sharpened when needed and accepting a new eraser.

There’s only one way I stand a chance: with the sacraments at the ready.

So pass me some pencils, please. I have some work to do!

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