‘Choose your friends carefully for they will become your identity.’ This sounds very scary!
We talked about our identity in Christ a few weeks ago and it is very important to make sure we are always rooted and grounded in who Christ says we are. But our choice of friends majorly impacts who we are too. Proverbs 27: 17 says;’ Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.’ We are designed to be strengthened, shaped, and sharpened by the people around us. So the people around us are going to change us. They will either influence us for the good or the bad.
There is a story in 2 Chronicles 10 about identity and how friends influence it. King Rehoboam had become the king and some of his people came to him asking for relief from the heavy hand his father had placed on them. Rehoboam wisely went for counsel on what he should do. He first talked to the older men and their advice to him was that if he would grant the people their wishes and be kind to them, they would be happy and willing to serve him. Then the king went to his friends to get their opinion. They had very different advice! A heavier hand and no mercy was what they thought he should do. It would appear that his identity in Christ was not very strong because he chose to listen to his peers, not the older and wiser men. When he made that choice he lost the respect of his people and his identity was changed in that country. The friends he listened to affected the course of his life forever.
Isn’t this what we tend to do too? We know who God says we are and that he says He loves us but we want to fit in or have the respect of our friends so we let ourselves listen to a wrong voice instead and just as surely as it changed Rehoboam it will change who we are.
Please think about the people you associate with and evaluate if they are influencing you for the good or the bad.
Credits: Daisy Wadel