8. Proverbs 13:20 - Consider Your Companions
“One who walks with wise men grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm.” (Proverbs 13:20)
When immersed in the customs and culture of a foreign country, people often find acquiring an accent or the country’s language easy. Local influence subtly soaks in without the foreigner even realizing it. Something similar happens in friendships.
When we make friends, some of their mannerisms, decisions, and beliefs leave an impact on us. After all, haven’t we known or read about a kid led into illegal activities because of the pressure from friends? Likewise, adults can be impacted in friendships. It might be subtle: a love of money, complaining, straying from church, or gossiping. Or, it might be more obvious like committing murder or adultery. Be wise. Making friends with fools hurts in the long run.
“Don’t befriend a hot-tempered man, and don’t associate with one who harbors anger: lest you learn his ways, and ensnare your soul.” (Proverbs 22:24-25 WEB)
I’ve noticed a funny thing. When my husband yawns, I usually “catch” his yawn, inevitably returning one of my own. Although not a disease or virus, yawns somehow manage to be contagious. Just try yawning around someone and see what happens.
Anger holds its own version of contagiousness, something a bit more learned but similar to yawning nonetheless. God calls our attention to the dangers of anger in Proverbs 22:24-25. We’re wise to heed the warning. Steer clear of being in close proximity to those who harbor anger. And while we’re at it, why not add a good dose of forgiveness to needed friendships as well? Check out Ephesians 4:31 for more encouragement.
“Don’t be deceived! ‘Evil companionships corrupt good morals.’” (1 Corinthians 15:33 WEB)
Who we hang around with, those folks we call friends, matters. Darkness loves to kill, steal, and destroy. It’ll use friendships to do the bidding work of the devil through subtle conversations laced with gossip, jealousy and more. Watch out as deception attempts to subtly claw its way into the lives of those with good morals.
Why not flip to the other side – focus on godly bonds instead? Friendships grounded on truth oppose the effects of evil companionships. Righteous relationships often nurture love, encouragement, and conversations brimming with righteous words. They house honesty, challenges coated with love when necessary, and certainly generous doses of grace.
Kristi Woods, writer and speaker, is passionate about women walking deeper with God. She clicks words of encouragement at www.KristiWoods.net and is published in both Chicken Soup for the Soul: Dreams and Premonitions and Military Families as well as on Proverbs 31 Encouragement for Today. Kristi, her husband, and their three children survived a nomadic, military lifestyle, and have set roots in Oklahoma. Connect with Kristi here: Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest.
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