Proverbs 27:17 As iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend.

1 Corinthians 15:33 says this a different way – Bad company corrupts good character. The company we keep matters. As parents, we’re very aware of our children and the company they keep. Yet, we’re not as aware when it comes to the company we keep.

Age does not make us immune to this proverb. Negative people, evil people, and people with worldly values will always dull our walk with God. When we associate closely with these people, the messages we are receiving reflect the values they hold. Our ears hear hopelessness, fear, anger, greed, lust, pride. Our eyes see stuff and worldly status symbols. This dulls our sense of who God is and what He is doing in this world. Our company is corrupting our character – there is no iron to sharpen our countenance upon.

When we associate with positive people, good people, and people with spiritual values, our countenance is sharpened and our walk with God is brightened. The messages we receive are messages of confidence, hope, love, generosity, and humility. Our hearts are filled with the gifts of the spirit. Our eyes see smiles and appreciation of the blessings of life. This sharpens our sense of who God is and the mighty Masterpiece He is creating in this world. It makes us appreciative of being allowed to be a small part of His plan. Our character is refreshed – we sharpen our inner spirit against the spirit of our brothers and sisters.

What’s the company you’re keeping? Negative or positive? What kind of company are you? Negative or positive? Are you iron for another to sharpen against? Or do you watch the nightly news and read negative internet posts and pass this along to your spouse, friends, and children? 

Too often, we forget that the Bible speaks to each individual – I am an individual, you are an individual. When the Bible says, “One person sharpens the countenance of another like iron sharpens iron”, it is saying that each of us has impact on the inner feelings of those we come in contact with. We have the ability to create happiness, joy, and blessings! We have the ability to lift someone from a low place to a higher place by our words, actions, and presence. We must choose to be that person and to interact with our brother or sister in this way. 

Happiness or sadness, positive or negative – with each breath we choose what we “gift” others. Choose your gift wisely.