Erasing the Purple Crayon
by Kathy Penrod
In elementary school, my teachers caught on to me. I was a talker, a giggler and a consistent distraction in class. By second grade, our school had developed something called “The Castle” for children like myself. Basically, it was a flannel-covered-cardboard partition to set around my desk. This made it impossible for me to see what was going on around me and, in turn, encouraged me (supposedly) to work harder at my school assignments.
On one very boring school day, another in which I was placed inside The Castle, I found myself, again, searching for SOMETHING to break the monotony of the day. On this day, the reprieve came in the form a purple crayon. With the half-broken crayon, I spelled my name, in my best handwriting, on the flannel inside of The Castle.
In spite of my stellar handwriting, my teacher did not appreciate my handiwork. A short time later, I was stuck in the classroom trying to erase my purple markings while the other students were out to recess. I tried and tried to erase that crayon but crayons were not meant to be erased, especially when applied to flannel-covered-cardboard. I remember thinking that my teacher was crazy for not realizing that elbow-grease was not going to make my name disappear and the eraser would only smudge the crayon. My 2nd grade self could not make this castle look new again.
With the advent of the new year, many of us are looking for fresh starts, new beginnings or just the resuscitation of old goals. Many of us are looking to become a better version of ourselves.
As I face this new year, my thoughts gravitate back to second grade and the purple writing in The Castle. In my life, I often feel as though I am trying to erase a purple crayon. I often feel that my efforts are redundant or pointless. And, though I try, I often come up short of making things turn out the way I want.
However. There is One who can erase the allegorical purple crayon from our lives. There is One who can make things new and give new life to our goals. As we face the coming New Year we can do so with confidence knowing that the Savior of the World will strengthen us to accomplish what is important. Where we lack, He makes up the difference. Where we sink, He buoys us up. Where we fail, He prevails. He is our Champion. With Jesus Christ, we can overcome all those things that weigh us down. He can make us new again. He can give us a fresh start.
It is my wish that each one of us will try to focus on the hope that the King of Peace offers each day. He is the one that can, not only erase the stubborn stains from our lives, but make us completely new again. He is the one that gives the new year new meaning.
Wishing you the happiest of New Years in 2018!