Have you ever seen in an old movie the way people used to have to write. They will dip a quill or a fountain pen into a little jar of ink. They could write a few words and then have to dip again.
But on June 19, 1943 the patent was filed for a revolutionary new pen -- the ballpoint pen! It contained ink in a barrel that had a small ball on the point that would roll on the paper. It was genius and quickly became a valuable part of every office and home. Originally it cost over $12.00 each, now you can get a package of 10+ at the Dollar Store for a buck! But just because it is cheap doesn't mean that it isn't valuable. Imagine having to go back to the quill or fountain pen. That sure would be messy to carry in your backpack or in mom's purse!
In Bible days the words of the Bible were written with a quill, one letter at a time by a scribe who was a person whose job it was to write. Scribes would write these ancient Bibles on a scroll. Maybe there would be one scroll of the Bible in a town; maybe a rich person could afford to have a personal copy of part of the Bible. Around 1440 a printing press was invented by Johannes Guttenberg that allowed for mass copies of printed materials to be printed, including the Bible. Soon more people had access to the printed Bible.
We would never want to go back to pre-printing press days. Neither would we want to have to personally copy the Bible with a ballpoint pen, but we are certainly grateful for this writing invention! It has made life so much easier to write an encouraging note to someone, or to draw something for the refrigerator. Today's challenge is to count how many ballpoint pens you can find in your house. And while you are doing that, maybe a good verse to memorize is Psalm 40:8 "I take joy in doing your will, my God, for your instructions are written on my heart."
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Writen by Sue Van Hal, Children's Church Leader