Sunday, February 10, 2013

Choosing Friends Wisely

When my children were growing up, I had to walk a fine line between telling my children to be kind to everyone and making "good" friends. That is a hard line to walk, as if you are kind to everyone, some of those friends may be troublemakers, have addictions, etc.  As a friend of mine once said,  "If you have two people trying to influence each other, one being a stand up kind of person, the other trying to negatively influence people, it is a lot easier to pull someone down than to lift the other person up."

Proverbs 13:20
"He who walks with the wise grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm." People who you associate with will influence you.

There was once a young boy who was playing in the field with his friends.  One of the friends pulled out a cigarette and dared the rest of the boys to take a puff.  Of course, not wanting to be a sissy, they all did. What they didn't realize is the lad who bullied them into giving it a try was doing so, so he wouldn't get into trouble.  After all, how could they tell their parents about this lad, when they tried it themselves? What kind of friend was this lad?

Proverbs 6:16-19  God talks about character....

God wants us to stay away from:
"Haughty eyes":  Those with arrogant pride.
"Lying tongue":  Those who compromise truth to advance themselves.
"Hands that shed innocent blood": Power mongers, abusers, violent.
"Hearts that devise wicked schemes": Those who devise ungodly plans.
"Feet to rush into evil": Those who rationalize ungodly behavior.
"False witness who pour out lies": Slanders other people. Betrays confidences.
"One who stirs dissension": Those who love divisiveness.

Characteristics of a wise friend:
Humility: Puts others before themselves
Honesty
Mercy: Extend themselves
Integrity: Do the right thing even when nobody is watching
Purity: Pure hearted
Trustworthy: Being caring and loving
Reconciler: Bring people together

1Corinthians 15:33
"Do not be mislead; bad company corrupts good character."

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