National Pack Rat Day

On National Pack Rat Day, it’s only fitting to feature a selection from Ruth Bell Graham’s book, Legacy of a Pack Rat. Many people are able to identify with Ruth and her “pack rat” way of living. Her attic was crowded and she loved to cherish even the very ordinary things that held special meaning. She also collected memories, ideas, and experiences through written word. Below is a sample of her writing:

Clogged Pens

I shook it. I knocked it gently, sideways on the top of the desk. I licked a piece of paper and wrote carefully in the moisture (I can’t tell you why this works, but it usually does). I repeated each procedure without results. Then I carried the pen to the sink, took it apart, and carefully flushed out the point. Refilling it, I sat down to write.

How like me, I thought with exasperation.

I have mugs full of pens on my desk: ballpoints, felt tips, ink pens—even pencils. But for very fine writing, such as notes in the margin of my Bible, I need a Rapidograph pen. This pen has a needle-fine point and uses India ink, which will not seep through or smear on the thin India paper.

How often when God has needed me and I have been clogged up (too busy or inundated with things—the necessary giving way to the unnecessary). Or I’ve gone dry.

When that happens, I need a “shaking up,” or I need special cleansing. And I need to be filled and refilled and filled again.

There have been times when God has patiently and carefully done just that. There have been other times when He has had to pass me over and pick up a pen that was usable.

But unlike a pen, I do have a choice. I can decide whether or not I remain usable.

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  1. Janet S Hast says:

    Thank you for your site being available.

  2. Werner Bürklin says:


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