Every person has an “inner circle” of friends. People who you hang out with a little more than others, people you trust with the concerns and thoughts of your life.
As I was sitting in Starbucks waiting for a couple of such people I got to thinking about the different people who have been in my inner circle over the past few years. There were those who I trusted a little too much, and then there were those who were the exact kind of friends I wanted. I started realizing that those who are in your inner circle greatly influence who you are, how you act and who you become.
“Do not be deceived: “Bad company ruins good morals.”” 1 Corinthians 15:33 (ESV)
“So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:11 (NLT)
“Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.” Proverbs 13:20 (ESV)
Are the people in your inner circle people who will build you up and give you wisdom or are they people who are going to corrupt your morals and make you a “companion of fools”?
I, myself, had to come to the point where I had to ask myself “Are the people I’m hanging around doing me more harm than good?” and the unfortunate answer for some was “yes, they are bad company who corrupt my morals” and I had to stop hanging around them. When I look at it in hindsight, I know it was the best decision I could have made, but when you’re so used to being around certain people, and then have to make choices that are best for you, you hurt. I hurt and missed them so bad. You’d think that getting rid of bad influences would be easy, but, let me say this; it’s not. It hurts. BIG TIME!
There was even a time where I really didn’t have anyone to talk to-and I was mighty tempted to run back to these bad influences-but in time, God has given me back ten fold in good friends and good influences what I lost in bad friends and bad influences!
Are there people in your life God has been speaking to you about their influence? If so, what is he saying about them? Sometimes it’s hard to hear what’s he’s saying, but just like the good, good father that he is, he only tells you it because he wants only the very best for you (and me)!