Walk with the wise and become wise; associate with fools and get in trouble. - Proverbs 12:30
Growing up, my mom would constantly warn me about who I would associate myself with. I can specifically remember a time in the third grade. I got in trouble because I was with a group of boys who were vandalizing the school bathroom.
By vandalizing, I mean throwing T.P. everywhere (don’t worry, it was unused T.P.). I can remember my mom telling me this:
You are guilty by association.
As I grew up, the more I realized this was true. Guilty by association happens all the time. Maybe for you it was another phrase:
You are the average of your five closest friends.
If Johnny jumped off a bridge, would you do it too?
The Bible speaks on the power of associating yourself with friends who bring out the best in you, not the worst. When we walk with the wise, we become wise. When we associate with fools, we become fools.
Now - I am not saying that we shouldn’t reach out to people who are in different situations than us. In fact, we constantly see Jesus hanging out with sinners and tax collectors. But - they were not Jesus’ best friends. The majority of the time, Jesus was with his disciples - namely Peter, James, and John. They were the friends that he was most vulnerable and open to.
It is important for you to have a small tribe that brings out the best in you. Choose friends who check in on you, text you, grab coffee with you. Choose friends that challenge you and ask you about your dreams. Chase after friendships that draw you closer into the love of God.
What is the quality of your current friendships? Are they drawing you closer to Jesus and bringing out the best in you? If not, What changes do you need to make?
If you don’t have quality friendships, who in your sphere of influence could you add to your tribe?