Saturday, July 21, 2012

On Choosing One's Company

Democritus, an ancient Greek philosopher, said, "Creatures flock together with their kind, doves with doves, cranes with cranes and so on".  There is also the more familiar saying about "birds of a feather will flock together" and the Mexican proverb, "Tell me  who your friends are and I'll tell you who you are".  Indeed, the company we keep reflects the kind of values we have - who we are and what we want to be. They can even change us, unconsciously. That is why choosing the right company is very important.  

The Bible has given us guidelines about choosing our friends.

"The righteous should choose his friends carefully.  For the way of the wicked leads them astray."   Proverbs 12:26.

"He who walks with wise men will be wise; but the companion of fools will be destroyed." Proverbs 13:20.

"If anyone teaches otherwise and does not consent to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which accords with godliness, he is proud, knowing nothing, from such withdraw yourself." 1 Timothy 6: 2, 5

".. in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanders, without self-control, brutal despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away."  2 Timothy 3:1-5

"Do not enter the path of the wicked, and do not walk in the way of evil.  Avoid it, do not travel on it; turn away from it and pass on." Proverbs 4:14-15

"My son, if sinners entice you, do not consent". Proverbs 1:10

"Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers.  For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness? And what accord has Christ with Belial? Or what part has a believer with an unbeliever? And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God.  As God has said, "I will dwell in them and walk among them.  I will be their God, and they shall be My people." Therefore, "Come out from among them and be separate," says the Lord." 2 Cor. 6: 14-17

In his book "Stumbling on Happiness", Daniel Gilbert gave this advise:

"Free yourself from negative people. Spend time with nice people who are smart, driven and likeminded.  Relationships should help you, not hurt you. Surround yourself with people who reflect the person you want to be.  Choose friends who you are proud to know, people you admire, who love and respect you- people who make your day a little brighter simply be being in it.  Life is too short to spend time with people who suck the happiness out of you.  When you free yourself from negative people, you free yourself to be YOU- and being YOU is the only way to truly live."

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