Sunday, November 12, 2023

Iron Cannot Sharpen Against Air

Iron Cannot Sharpen Against Air
by David Brenneman 

Remember this—had any other condition been better for you, divine love would have put you there. You are placed by God in the most suitable circumstances, and if you had been given the choice of your lot, you would soon cry out, “Lord, choose my inheritance for me—my self-will is causing me to be pierced with many sorrows.” Be content with what you have, since the Lord has ordered all things for your good. Take up your own cross each day; it is the burden best suited for your shoulders, and it will prove most effective to make you perfect in every good word and work, to the glory of God.

From "Morning and Evening" by C.H. Spurgeon

"Iron sharpens iron, So one man sharpens another." Proverbs 27:17.

Been heavily thinking on growing in Christ. While Hollywood promotes all kinds of fictional heroes as training to fight bad guys by grow in Christ requires men with men, women with women.  Biblically speaking women are not to teach men.  

In growing in Christ, we must be learning from other's in Christ who have been well taught by the Spirit themselves.  The Bible tells of how those in higher authority within the Church shouldn't be young in the faith.  

We need other's in Christ to challenge us, to push us, to get us to a point of Spiritual achievement.  To shed things from our lives willingly rather than compulsively. 

"Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." Philippians 3:13-14.

My hearts desire is to grow in Christ. What I have discovered is doing it alone is not practical nor is it what the Spirit ever teaches.  You cannot overcome what your own understanding cannot see as being hindrances or obstructions.  You need someone who is in a Godly relationship with you to point out things, to challenge you in areas, that you don't see yourself. 

The Apostle Paul understood training.  He had been heavily trained in the Old Testament writings, even though it wasn't yet a teaching from the Spirit.  When on the road to Damascus, he was brought to that point where his earthly training met his new Spiritual Teacher.  All that he thought he knew was turned on its ear.  After his physical eyes were covered, his Spiritual eyes were opened.  After he was baptized, his new Spiritual insights changed everything.  Iron was indeed sharpening iron to bring about that change.  He only previously thought his former training gave him a weapon to wield.  The Spirit showed him a still better way. Showed him that there was no edge to what was in his mind and heart. 

We are really never going to grow as we should in Christ if we try to teach ourselves.  We can't be all that we can be if we have no 'sparring partner' in the faith.   We aren't to be sponges to take in information Spiritually, then do nothing with it.  

Doing as a child does in playing with a plastic sword, does nothing to train when there's no real challenge. 

We read in the Bible of the truth that we were created for relationships.  First and foremost is our real relationship with Jesus Christ.  We are to cultivate that relationship, not treating Him like a for-hire employee.  We are to be those the Scripture says who are indeed taught of God.  The Spirit will indeed teach us from the Word of God, but will as it clearly says, use other to help us train up in Godliness. 

We have a purpose in life that is God ordained.  It's not to have health, wealth and prosperity.  It's to grow in Christ and teach others to do the same.  It also isn't just to make it to the other end of our years in peaceful happiness either.  I know of Godly men who never stopped until the day they did die.  

I used to have Godly men in my life that challenged my thinking.  They truly pushed my heart into being stronger in Christ.  That is what I miss most these days.  It's been a prayer to either restore those relationships or for the Spirit to find me new men to have in my life to help me press on to my upward call of God in Christ Jesus. 

What about you?  Are you being challenged in your Spiritual life?  Are there the right people in your life to push you to grow in Christ?  Or are you waiting out life until you die or the Rapture of the Church happens?

We read in the parables of Jesus of the one concerning the talents given that were to be invested.  Two did, one did not.  We were given a measure of faith when we came to Christ with the absolute intent that we do something with it.

Doing nothing isn't an option. 
Doing life on our own isn't an option. 

My prayer for myself as well as all of you is that you, I hope, have come to Christ. Second, that you aren't being a Spiritual couch potato.  That you aren't sitting around waiting for life to be over.  That you are interested and intent on growing in Christ. 

God's got a plan for you, a plan for me. 
At its heart is growing in Christ. Right now my heart aches to find a true friend who will be in my life daily if necessary to push me to grow in Christ.  Long ago I had that and for over two decades I have been seeking it.  For a time I had someone before we moved, but God called him home.  God provided such a man once and I am confident He will do it again. 

All NASB 1995 and NASB Scripture Excerpts used by permission. (C) Lockman Foundation.

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