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July 24, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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“As iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend.”—Proverbs 27:17 (NKJV)
Once a month, my husband and his good friend meet for breakfast. I smile every time he picks up the car keys and kisses me farewell on the cheek. Normally, I’d wonder why I wasn’t invited and whine a little, but this date is more than two guys gorging on fried eggs and bacon. These two brothers in Christ meet for meals to exchange hard-earned wisdom, hold each other accountable, and encourage one another to continue to pursue Christ.
The wisest man on earth, Solomon, understood the value of seeking out godly counsel. He paints a picture for us of a blacksmith standing with an iron hammer striking a sword or axe repeatedly with heavy blows. The friction and sparks created by the close contact helps to file down the sword’s blade and hone it for better use. Solomon wants us to understand that although the contact can be painful, it produces a stronger instrument. As we persist in pounding truth through our interactions, we help shape a godly character in our friends.
Without this mutual refining process, we are prone to becoming dull and inactive. We fail to notice how we’ve become worn down and lost our spiritual edge. A wise friend has a keen eye for what is lacking in your life and is willing to cut you ever so gently to help you develop a character that points more effectively to Christ.
Meeting regularly with a wise friend helps shape your life into a razor-sharp weapon ready to make a greater impact in this world. We can’t cut away what is ineffective in our lives unless we lay ourselves down on the table and invite an iron friend to hammer away and help hone our hearts.
Are you regularly spending time discussing your spiritual journey with sharp people? Forming friendships to help spark your faith is a vital part of strengthening your walk. You could join a weekly small group or start attending a Bible study at your church. Interacting with iron will improve your spiritual life and increase your influence for Christ.
DIG: Read Proverbs 27:5, 6, and 9. How does interacting with a wise friend add sweetness to your life?
DISCOVER: Read Galatians 2:11-14. How does Paul help sharpen Peter by speaking the truth in love?
DO: Pick up the phone and call one sharp friend this week to schedule a date for coffee and spiritual conversation.