A Sharper Tool
God help me to recognize the importance of community for spiritual formation. You didn’t intend for us to merely survive as a lone ranger Christians, but You want us to thrive in a community of believers.
Read: Proverbs 27:17 NIV
“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”
Over the last 15 years, many people have made a lasting impact on my life as a follower of Jesus. Some of these people were able to influence me through the spoken word while others influenced me through their written word. Without these influences I wouldn’t be “as sharp” spiritually. I take great joy and comfort knowing that the same spirit who lives in me lives in other believers and thus God can use them to help me along the way. I think back to one of my earliest influences in high school who taught me that choosing to follow Jesus was the starting line and not the finish line. Later down the road I was fascinated by the insights of a philosopher and theologian who illuminated the heart of Jesus’ message and warned against the errors of swerving too far to the right or the left. In more recent memory, I was challenged by a prominent preacher’s message of the centrality and preeminence of Jesus in the life of a Christian. My life currently has been shaped significantly by one of the most respected defenders of Christianity with the message of loving God not just with my heart and soul, but also my mind. Without time spent reading and reflecting on God’s word with other believers, in person or in print, we aren’t as sharp as we could be. God’s story plays out in the lives of millions of believers all with stories to tell - that we may be encouraged and that we may continue to learn.
God desires to use each and every one of us to make an impact in the world for His kingdom. Being sharp makes us a more effective tool in His hands. One of the many ways God continues to shape us into the right tool for accomplishing His mission is through the equipping and encouragement received from other believers.
Lord help me to prioritize time in the Word with other Christians. May I recognize anew that You often speak to us through fellow believers. Help me see that I, too, have unique experiences and have learned spiritual lessons that can benefit the Church.