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  • Writer's pictureEve M. Harrell

Three Hundred Years

Updated: Aug 3, 2023

Who is in your life?

Have you taken inventory of the people God has blessed you?

Some are teachers, others are encouragers, and still, others serve to sharpen you. Yes, even those rough around the edges.

I was taking inventory of the existing conditions of a job site when a gentleman walked up to me. You could tell he had been around the construction industry for a while and had the resume to prove it. I was a green young woman in a man's world. Or so I thought.

As I was taking notes on my trusty notepad, the gentleman looked up at the rectangular duct hanging in the air and looked down at my very unimaginative sketch, several times in fact. I politely continued my work, expecting him to share what he was thinking when I finished my inventory.

Then he looked me in the eye with a Popeye squint and asked, "How many of those ducts have you hung?"

If I can be transparent, I was lost for a moment. My uncertain thoughts wandered because the truth of the matter is, the answer was none. (At the time anyway.) Those thoughts took me down the familiar road of condemnation, "you're unqualified," "you're not a man," blah, blah, blah.

Then I looked up with a smile and said, "Well Sir, if I am honest, I haven't hung any, but I have three hundred years of experience behind me."

The gentleman looked at me for a minute. Wariness turned to a smirk which turned into a smile. Nodding, he said, "You're a smart Cookie." And he continued on his way.

I had never seen this gentleman before that day, and haven't seen him since. But the moment, I carry with me always, along with the many who have gone before me, walked with me, carried me, and pushed me from behind. (True story!)

God has placed some amazing people in my life who saw what God placed in me even before I ever did. He was the Refining Fire that softened and protected me as others led me into the instruction needed so I could fulfill my next task. And let me tell you, there were times that I had to be broken so the malleable metal could be formed.

Thank you to all of you who have sharpened me. And a special thank you to those who never gave up when I needed to be refined. I am eternally grateful for your investment in this little green girl who walked uncertainly into the calling God placed on her life.

So, who has God placed in your life to sharpen you? Who will God sharpen through you?

As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17

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