As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend. — Proverbs 27:17
When your kitchen knives get dull, chances are you have a handy tool in a drawer that allows you to resharpen the blade with a few simple strokes of the metal across the tool. Or perhaps you have a whetstone in your workshop that allows you to renew the blade on your tools.
But in the ancient world, the process of sharpening tools wasn’t so easy.
The process requited persistent striking of metal on metal to achieve the desired shape and sharpness. Not only that, but the metal being used to sharpen had to be at least as strong as the object striking it, and it had to hold up to multiple blows and sometimes even great amounts of heat.
In the same way, relationships require perseverance and resilience. With time your best relationships will help to sharpen, strengthen, and improve you. There are no shortcuts in this process, it takes time and can be arduous.
You can probably look back over your own life and identify one or two relationships you’ve had for many years and see how this concept has played out.
And you can see how the end result is something strong and quite beautiful.
God wants you to be in relationships with others who, like iron sharpening iron, will help transform you into an effective instrument of God’s grace and love.
Ask God to show you areas in your life that need sharpening and ask Him to help you persevere in the relationships He wants for you.
Questions for thought
Who is one person you can count on to sharpen you?
2. Why might it be more important for you to have these kinds of relationships with other believers, as opposed to those who aren’t Christians?