Scientists say that 95% of your success or failure depends on the people you interact with every day*. These are the people you are used to being with, socializing with, and identifying with. How does this affect you as a Christian? How to choose Christian friendship responsibly?
Devotional for Today February 1
I am writing to you that you must not associate with anyone who claims to be a brother or sister but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or slanderer, a drunkard or swindler. Do not even eat with such people. (1 Corinthians 5:11)
Choose Christian Friendship Responsibly
Man is free. Therefore, you do not have to become friends with everyone. We consciously choose our friends. It is a responsible step.
Therefore, you do not have to become friends with those who constantly advocate dishonesty, lack of principles, and convictions.
Could be your friend someone who persuades you to forget the principles of the Christian life and behave like everyone else, like the sinful world? You will inevitably succumb to such daily influences without feeling it yourself. Such a friend drags you down with himself.
Could your friends be people who are jealous, who gossip about others? Do they really have to be your friends? When such people meet, the main topic of conversation is to discuss other people’s lives and their mistakes. Although as a Christian you should try not to be involved in this, because you do not feel how it affects you in a negative way. It inevitably affects your own attitude towards people.
There are also people who constantly complain about how they are not doing well and how others are to blame for their failures. But they themselves do not want to change anything in their lives. Are you sure that such people do not have bad influence on you?
You can help with your prayer. Prayer for a friend is essential. But beware of his bad manners.
The Apostle Paul identifies such people as “extortioners and robbers”.
Friends in Christian Community
Take a very responsible approach to friendship. And look very responsibly at the community.
Everybody brings their own contribution. Don’t accept every offer without first considering whether it is in line with your faith and values.
Seek friendship with people who truly live according to God’s will and who are an example to you and whom you respect. Spend your time meaningfully.
Life is short. Therefore, do not waste your time on sin.
Know how to say NO
The Church as a community is an important part of life. You do not come to Church to cultivate sin, but to be free from sin. If a member of your community is living in sin, is proud of it, and encourages others to do the same, then “Purge the evil person from among you.” So says the Apostle Paul. (1 Corinthians 5:13)
Sound intolerant? But the opposite is true.
Know the difference between arrogance and intolerance. Being able to say NO is as important as being able to say YES. It is important to be able to ask and apologize.
Prayer for Today
Strengthen our will, Almighty God, to live according to Your Word. Protect us, so that when we save others, we may not be condemned ourselves. Where we are weak, give us the power of the Holy Spirit. Protect us from the influence of those who serve evil. Teach us to choose friends who will accompany us to goodness. May our Christian friendship honor You and bring us joy. I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.
*According to research by social psychologist Dr. David McClelland of Harvard, “the people you habitually associate with determine as much as 95 percent of your success or failure in life.”
Also read: Devotional for January 31