Iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17
For the longest time I understood that verse but never really thought about how it applies to myself and what it looks like off the page, in that sharpening. Until the other day.
I was having a conversation via email with a friend about a situation and what I had seen come from it now months later. What God was choosing to reveal to me now, the lesson to be learned and the growth which needed to come from it all. How He chose to use the situation for good and glory when it could have easily turned into something far worse.
God’s pretty good at that. Taking a situation, a mess of our own making, and changing the script. But we have to allow it. Often that means getting sharpened by another person. That means sparks, tension, and sometimes fire. But it also means sloughing off the dull edges. It means being in community with others enough to create that spark and ignite the kindling of sharpening.
The question I asked my friend, and I pose it here too, as I still ruminate and dig deep on it is this: If iron sharpens iron, how much more then is God refining us in the process?
If we allow Him to, He will take the sharpening process further. Fashioning us into tools for use, to be resharpened again and again as He works out His purpose in us and through us. That refining also means we may get refashioned for another purpose in the midst of the work, as the season changes and as His will for the work to be done is lived out in us.
We have to be willing. We have to be available and most importantly we have to be sharpened, ready for use and refinement for the purpose He has called us to in the now.