"Iron shapeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend"--Proverbs 27:17
I have a friend here that is amazing. She is endlessly creative and upbeat. She is also a homeschoolling mom, but she does such interesting things--games, field trips, just different things that this creatively impaired mind would never think of. She is Godly and is into nutrition. I feel very safe under the influence of this friend.
I do not think of myself as easily influenced. What people may think about what I'm going to do (as long as I know it's right) does not influence me. I mean, it's nice if it does not cause an uproar, and it's a bonus if people are happy, but what peoples' opinions are on what my family and I are doing is just not much of a factor. However, God knows His creation. He knows that even the boldest trail blazers among us ARE influenced by others, which is why He put that verse in the Bible. We choose our influences. WE choose the people that sharpen us. I have been around people who make me a grumpier, less thankful person. That's iron sharpening iron. Conversely, when I am around my friend down the road, I exude a better attitude. So I have to choose who I want to sharpen me. Who would God choose for me? I want my countenance to be turned toward the face of God, not looking down at the ground, being dragged down by what I perceive as my own horrible misfortune. A good friend can help keep your face lifted in praise. A bad one can help keep it twisted into the face of a complainer. If you are having a problem with YOUR outlook, check out who is sharpening you.
And have a GREAT friday!! :)