Choose Your Friends Wisely
By Rick Warren
— May 17, 2011
“Do not be fooled. Bad companions ruin good character.” 1 Corinthians 15:33 (TEV)
We need to encourage our children to make friends with people who will pull them up instead of drag them down.
The moment your kids start going to school, you no longer have the primary influence on their life. They start to become influenced by their peer group. And the older they get, the more they look to their peers.
So, as a parent, you need to have a conversation with your children about who their companions are going to be. You need to help your kids understand the impact friends have on them and the importance of choosing good friends.
We need to encourage our children to make friends with people who will pull them up instead of drag them down. People who will encourage them and be positive influences in their lives. Because the number one factor that will determine whether they succeed or fail in life is the kind of friends they choose – friends who hold them back or friends who spur them on.
We all want to belong, no matter what our age. We are all looking for friends and connections and acceptance. We want to be a part of a fellowship. Why? Because that’s the way God wired us. The Bible says, “Since we are all one body in Christ, we belong to each other, and each of us needs all the others” (Romans 12:5 NLT).
It’s important that we teach this truth to our children, that God created us to belong to others and to need others, because our society teaches the opposite. Our culture is one of hyper-individuality where everyone is a lone ranger. We should only take care of ourselves and look out for our own interests. But this leaves children with no support and no sense of belonging. Is it any wonder depression and other emotional illnesses are on the rise?
The truth is, to live an emotionally healthy life, we need people in our lives. We need healthy, supportive relationships. We need each other. We need the belonging that comes from fellowship with other believers. That’s what the church is for.
Pastor Rick is leading us through a series on parenting right now, and we thought you’d be interested in this new curriculum at Saddleback Resources: Raising Your Kids without Raising Your Blood Pressure.