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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Bookends (01/30/14)

TITLE: Brian Trouble
By Ken Ebright


My first job in television was working as a production assistant at Nortel Cable. I videotaped civic events while others in the company installed and repaired people's cable service. One month, George and John were named employees of the month. In the memo that circulated throughout the company, it called them bookend installers. I assume that it meant that they worked well together. Since I worked in a different department it was hard for to see how well they worked together.

A few years later, I worked as a lighting director at a company called Value Vision (now Shop NBC). My boss felt that I needed someone to help me. Brian moved into lighting and became my assistant. We were far from being bookend lighting technicians. When we had a slow day, we wouldn't get along.

One of my duties first thing every day was to go from set to set and change out light bulbs if needed. I asked Brian to help, but he wouldn't even lift a finger. Back at Nortel, I am sure that if George needed help , then John would help him.

George and John were obviously model employees they probably wouldn't call in sick to get out of doing something. That's exactly what Brian did a day after we were assigned the task of straightening out a gel (A sheet of colored plastic that is placed over a light) cabinet.

I'm sure that John never purposely did anything to get George mad. At the shopping channel I apparently didn't repair a light the right way, so Brian tied a string between two racks in a way so I would trip.

As Christians, we're supposed to love our enemies. It was hard for me to like someone who was out to hurt me. On the other hand I failed as Christian to show Brian the love of Jesus. I didn't care about our working relationship.

There are people in this world that are hard to love. When we get into these situations, we need to pray for the person in question. It's hard to pray for someone you dislike. I wonder how things would have been had I prayed for Brian. Hopefully God would of changed both of our hearts, and I could have been a better Christian witness.

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This article has been read 153 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Norma-Anne Hough02/08/14
I must admit this is the first time I have heard that expression bookend employees!
Interesting read and I liked the way you ended it with thoughts on how perhaps your relationship with Brian could have been improved.
Keep writing.
Larry Whittington02/09/14
This appears to be a real life story where the writer sees the need to pray that there can be peace between the parties. And
Yes, this should have been done.

Now there is still prayer that needs to be done. Jesus said that if we did not forgive those who sinned against us, God would not forgive our sins. If we don't have our sins forgiven, we are not ready for heaven. Forgive all former and any present "enemies" and pray for them asking God to forgive them of their sin.

The emotion that was brought to my mind and heart was sadness.

Put your heart in heaven and your eyes on God's word as you write and live.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 02/11/14
I think this is a great take on the topic. People everywhere are like bookends. We need the other or we'll fall flat on our faces.