If you’ve been following my blog, you know about my cluster headaches. Imagine having a never-ending migraine. What’s commonly known as a trigger for migraines? Light and sound, right? It’s so true. I leave for work when it’s still dark outside. The curvy roads (and often fog) make it difficult for drivers to see, so we all end up having to use our brights. It’s an entire commute of turning the bright headlights on and off. Well, there’s this one car . . . I’m just going to go ahead and throw this out there: “BLESS HIS HEART.”
He blinds me every morning. He’s the guy (or gal, I don’t really know for sure) that doesn’t turn his brights off when facing oncoming traffic. Either he forgets every single morning, or he just doesn’t care about blinding people. So, every morning (when my headaches are typically at their worst), I’m being blinded by this one particular car. How do I know it’s the same person? Well, I do the typical thing drivers do when being blinded – I flash my brights once to remind the other driver. As soon as he turns his brights off, I’m able to see that he is driving a silver car with only one working headlight. Every morning it’s like this: BRIGHTS, ugh, reminder flash, followed by “Oh, that’s not going to pass inspection.”
We do this dance every morning. It’s really annoying. I guess it was really annoying for that guy to be reminded by me as well. One morning, the dance ended a little differently. Instead of turning his brights off, he flashed them at me about a dozen times. Yes, you’re angry. Got it. But what am I and all of the other drivers supposed to do? Which got me thinking…
How do we correct others or respond to correction? How does iron sharpen iron?
Proverbs 27:17 states that “Iron sharpens iron as one man sharpens another.”
I looked into how iron is sharpened. I learned that iron is sharpened in different ways. An iron file can be used to sharpen another piece of iron. Iron is actually a very malleable metal which means it is easily shaped or bent. Slow and gentle strokes are usedd to file a piece of iron into the correct shape.
So what did Solomon mean by saying that men sharpen each other like iron? Perhaps, and this is merely my opinion, he was encouraging us to correct each other gently and with kindness. It doesn’t take much for most of us to feel corrected. We get the message – we don’t need to be beaten to get it.
When we have to correct someone, we need to remember that iron sharpens iron. I’m not being redundant. Read it out loud with emphasis on the word iron. Take note that it’s the same word, implying equality between men. We are all the same. No one is perfect. We will all, at some point, be on the giving and receiving of correction. It should be given and accepted with grace.
So, although I may never be able to effectively communicate with that driver, I can be encouraged by the Scriptures that have been brought to mind. I leave you with this:
Colossians 4:6 – May your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, so that you should know how you should respond to each person.