Choosing Friends

“You will know them by their fruits.” Matthew 7:16

Next to accepting Jesus as our Savior and Lord, the most crucial decision we will ever make is who are friends will be.  This decision will change the course of our lives.  For we are influenced by those around us, and “Bad company corrupts good morals.”  Don’t be decieved.  You can not hang out with ungodly people and remain godly.  Missionary dating or friendship rarely works out.  Yes, we should reach out to the unsaved, but our friends, those we share our heart with, those whom we spend time with must be Godly Christians desiring the things of God – to grow closer to God, to be led by His Spirit, to evangelize, etc…

You will run across many who go to church or who say that they are Christians.  But we are to jusdge others by their fruit.  No, no one is perfect.  But are they quick to repent?  Are they striving to better their conversation and their actions?  Are they convicted by the Holy Spirit when they are wrong?  Do they want to talk about God and Jesus and the Bible?  Are they peaceful and peacemakers?  Do they love others or mock others?  Do they have an inner joy rather than discontnentment?  Are they patient with others?  Are they kind, good, faithful, gentle?  Do they show self-control?  These are the fruits of the Spirit.  These are the traits of thepeople that you want to be near.

“But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.” Galatians 5:16.  If the people around you are immoral, impure, sensual, idolaters, sorcerers, strifeful, jealous, angry, disputing, dissentious, causing factions, envious, drunk, and partying, then they are not going to be a good influence.  These are the fruit of the flesh.  These are things that ungodly people take part in.  Boys looking at girl magazines or talking aobut girls in a disrespectful way is not God’s way.  Crude jokes and snide comments are not of God.  Walk away.  Or even better, run!!!

Seek out those of like mind and Spirit.  These will encourage and lift you up.  They will stand by you through thick and thin.  They will pray for you when times are tough.  They will laugh with you and rejoice when they see God do great things in and through you.  And don’t let these friends go easily.  They are hard to come by!  Encourage them, pray for them, talk about the Word of God with them.  Keep your relationship pure and enjoy the time you get to spend with them..

Be discerning.  Your friends will prove you out.

Hint of the Day: Teach your children that they should be friendly with everyone and share.  But be careful to help them choose good friends to spend their time with.  It’s okay if they don’t want to invite everyone to a birthday party as long as their motives are pure.  Pray about it.  Teach them the difference between spending quality and quantity time with great godly friends and spending time ministering to others.  Listen to your child as they talk about their friends.  Ask questions.  Be involved!

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