Sunday, June 15, 2008

Iron Sharpens Iron

Had an amazing weekend in which I got a small taste of what it must have been like in the early New Testament church!

We had the privilege of staying with a wonderful family who have such a hunger and heart for God, and from start to finish it was centered around one thing: Jesus Christ and Him crucified!

For two days we talked of the good things God has done, we shared experiences, testimonies, prayed, feasted on the Word, encouraged and challenged one another. It was a very real glimpse into Acts 2 (The Fellowship of the Believers).

It was all about God. It was not forced, it was not fake, it was a time of refreshing, encouraging, challenging, sharpening! It was what I long to see throughout the professing body here in Australia!

One of the interesting things that arose on leaving, after talking with my brother, is that we both felt challenged by each other in many areas in our lives, marriages, families and ministries. It was iron sharpening iron, yet we both felt not so much that we were the sharpening steel or the grindstone, but the iron receiving all the grinding.

I was thinking about it on the way home, wondering how it was possible that we both seem to challenge and exhort and encourage and rebuke one another in seemingly similar areas... then it dawned on me. It wasn't that we were expert grinders and polishers, it was because we were both lifting God up. We were lifting His Word up. We were lifting His Truth up. It wasn't us! It was Him! We'd simply been in the Word, quoting the Word, reciting the Word, memorising the Word, and He was doing all the grinding through that Word of Truth and the power of His Spirit!

Herein lies a valuable lesson for the professing church, for the pulpit, for the fellowship groups, for the studies and home churches. Lift up the Truth! Lift up the Word! Lift up God and lower man! Many will be offended, many will be saved, many will be sharpened, many will walk away, many will be refreshed and encouraged. One thing is for sure, many wont ever be the same again!