Our theme for this month: “A New Year, A New Beginning”
Our Bible verse for today: “The one who walks with the wise will become wise, but a companion of fools will suffer harm.” Proverbs 13:20 (CSB)
Our thought for today: “Choose your friends carefully”
I’m pretty sure that when you were a child your momma probably warned you, “Choose your friends carefully.” It was good motherly advice and it still applies. Over time we become like those we associate with and therefore it’s important for us to be very selective about who we’re hanging around with.
But beyond being a classic and time-honored thing that mothers have always said to their children, it’s also solidly Biblical and is expressed in the Bible numerous times, in different ways, by different writers. Solomon said it in Proverbs 13:20. He said it again in Proverbs 27:17 when he wrote, “Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another.” In 1 Corinthians 15:33 the Apostle Paul expressed it this way, “Do not be deceived: Bad company corrupts good morals.”
As we conclude our thinking about New Year’s resolutions regarding relationships, I want to encourage you to give careful thought to who you plan to associate with in 2020. As has been noted already in this series, your most important relationship is the one you have with God, and paying extra attention to that relationship is certainly important.
But there are also other relationships that will help to enhance your growth and development as a person. Do you have a mentor in your life, someone who is older, wiser, more experienced, and who will spend time with you, building into your life? That’s what Proverbs 13:20 is talking about. Spend time with people who are wiser than you and in time you will learn from them and become wise like them.
How about close Christian friends, especially those of the same gender? Are you part of a small group of men or women who are open and honest with each other, who hold each other accountable, and who help each other to grow and to navigate the difficult times in life? Proverbs 27:17 can be about one-on-one relationships, but it is also often used regarding small accountability groups of men or women.
And then there’s 1 Corinthians 15:33. If you hang around with bank robbers then pretty soon you will probably be robbing banks too. If you associate with people who drink a lot and who use foul language, in time those behaviors will define you too. Find people who have the kind of life that you would like to have and spend your time with them.
Perhaps a good New Year’s resolution would be to find a mentor (Proverbs 13:20); become part of a small accountability group (Proverbs 27:17); and maybe even say good-bye to some associates who really shouldn’t be part of your life anyway (1 Corinthians 15:33). Relationships in life are crucial. We’re either helped or hurt by the nature of our relationships with others, so choose your friends carefully.