We all like to think that we are our own person. However, we’re not. Our lives are influenced. We are influenced by our family, friends, colleagues, mentors, and even our enemies in some cases.
Just like work the media, other people can influence in good or bad ways. I once had friend begin to realize that the friendships my friend has were not extremely beneficial. They were influencing bad attitude and bad behavior. This was hard, as this friend didn’t want to change their social climate.
Friendships are tricky. Most of is probably have friends from our past that we can say didn’t have the best influence on us. However, in many cases it’s a mixed bag. Friends encourage us, push us, and love us. When it comes do the bad things our friends may do, it’s easier to overlook when they make us laugh or feel special.
Grace is required in any lasting friendship. However, friendship cannot be defined by foolishness. It’s great to be goofy sometimes, but it’s not great to be stupid anytime. That may come across harsh, but if friends are encouraging you to do things that cause lasting harm to yourself or others, they are not your friends.
When it comes to the people that influence us, it is important to have someone who can speak truth to you. It is important to have a person or persons who can challenge you, ask you hard questions, and push you to grow. These are mentoring relationships. I encourage everyone to have at least one of these. This is the good of influence.
When it comes to becoming who God created us to be, it’s important to have a group of people who can see us clearly. It’s important to find people we can trust so we can confidently share who we are.
When you find this, you will have friends that will know the good and the bad. When you can’t see the goodness on your life, they will see it and speak it.
These are the friends to pursue.