Thursday, September 15, 2005

Friends forever...

Peer pressure doesn’t end with the teen years. It was a shock to me as an adult to discover that. No matter what our age, I suspect we’ll have to be discerning about the people we choose for friends. Even in the church, you’ll find gals who gossip, are totally materialistic, dress immodestly, and have worldly values. If you hang with them, you’ll feel the pressure to be like them.

Don’t be fooled into thinking that it doesn’t matter what kinds of friends you have. Hanging out with immoral and dishonest girls and guys can change you! Sometimes believers think that they can hang out with such friends because Jesus did it. After all, he befriended thieving tax collectors and prostitutes. Shouldn’t we do the same thing so that we can be good witnesses to them? Yes, and no. There is a difference between talking with “bad company” and choosing them for your closest friends.

“Do not be misled: ‘Bad company corrupts good character.’” (1 Corinthians 15:33 NIV) Consider these examples. When you mix a glass of pure clean water with a glass of dirty water, it all becomes cloudy. The dirt spreads—not the purity. If you’re healthy when you sit next to a very sick person, you can catch his flu, but he won’t catch your health. In the same way, bad company is “catching.”

How does it happen? Often it starts with our words. Timothy compared ungodly talk to gangrene. Gangrene occurs when tissue on your body begins to rot because there is no blood supply. “Avoid godless chatter, because those who indulge in it will become more and more ungodly. Their teaching will spread like gangrene.” (2 Timothy 2:16-17 TNIV) In other words, talking in a godless manner kills off your morals bit by bit.

Do be friendly with everyone, but choose girls with godly character for your closest friends. Then you can build one another up and grow in godly character together.

Food for thought: Who are your closest friends? How do they behave? How do you behave when you’re with them?

(partial excerpt from Girlz Rock, Zonderkidz 2005 devotional)

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