He who walks with the wise grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm. Proverbs 13:20 (NIV)
Be very careful about how you choose your friends. Why is that? You tell me. I will become like my friends. If my friends are wise I will grow wise under their influence and encouragement. If my friends are foolish I will become foolish as I follow their bad example. That’s right. That’s quite clear and very simple to understand isn’t it? Yes, it is.
How will you go about choosing your friends? What will you be looking for in a friend? I will ask myself if I would be happy if I became like my friends. That’s a very good question. I will consider my friend’s wisdom. What kind of wisdom will you be looking for? I won’t be looking for wisdom from this world. I will be looking for wisdom that comes from you. So my closest friends will need to know you. I will be expecting you to speak to me through my closest friends. I want my closest friends to be completely honest with me. I want them to point out what I can’t see. I have lots of blind spots. I have flaws that have gone unnoticed and uncorrected. Close and good friends will tell me exactly what I need to hear and see. I will give my closet friends permission to speak into my life. I will listen attentively to the close friends that you will bring into my life. So, you are expecting that I will bring close friends into your life? That’s for sure; I’m counting on you for that. That’s good.
What else will you be looking for in a friend? I don’t want all my friends to be exactly like me. I’m glad that you brought that up. Why is that? You said something that will not end up being true. What’s that? You said that all your close friends would need to know me. Do you really think I will only bring you friends that know me? No, now that you mention it, that doesn’t seem right to me. I’m guessing that you will bring people into my life that don’t know you. Some of these people will become my friends. Some of these people will come to know you through the friendship I share with them. That’s exactly right. So, don’t exclude people who don’t know me as your friends. There is a big difference between someone who does not yet know me and someone who is a fool. A fool does not want to know and live by the truth. A fool has rejected and is walking away from the truth. A fool has no interest in coming to know me. I will bring friends, who don’t yet know me, into your life. They will be hungry to know me. They will want to live the life that you are living with and for me. They will want what you have. I have you. You are my Savior and Lord. Yes, I am. You can plan that I will bring friends of all kinds into your life. They will speak into your life and you will speak into their lives. I’m looking forward to it. That’s very good.
Lord, I have had a tendency to choose foolish friends. I have suffered harm when I have allowed myself to a companion of a fool. Help me now to choose wise friends that will help and encourage me to grow in wisdom as I follow you. Amen
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