In the early ’90s, I was shepherding a small Baptist church in rural Canada. In those days, being single, I lived with various families in the community. One family who owned their own meat production business graciously allowed me to stay with them for a couple of months. Part of my room and board was helping prepare various cuts of meat. I will never forget the importance of having a sharp knife. In fact even if the knife was only a little dull it just wouldn’t cut it!

I can still picture this husband and wife team pulling out the sharpening rods every few minutes and watching sparks fly as their respective knife and rod collided in an almost rhythmic fashion. I have never witnessed such incredible sharpening skills!

This ancient wisdom sparks a vital truth for us today. If you and I are going to be all that God wants us to be we have to experience regular, personal and spiritual sharpening through close interaction with iron-men and iron-women.

In other words, we best grow when we most glow.

Never ever underestimate the influence your inner circle can and will make on your life.

A true iron-friend is one who serves as God’s instrument to transform you, bringing out the best in you. It is one He uses to give you a cutting edge. God wants us to be in constant interaction so we may keep sharp and productive.

Are you an iron-friend? Who is your iron-friend?

As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17