How to Deal With Bad Company

Your life.

Your life.

How do we maintain a pollution-free life? Are we willing to honestly assess the influence others have on us? How high do we set the bar for our personal relationships?

A recent series taught by our pastor, Nicolas Celovsky, has me thinking about this subject.

Following are some thoughts taken from the series material, along with my comments:

Be an overcomer. Okay, that may sound like a religious buzz-phrase. Too bad. It’s still true. The gospel does not promote wimpiness, weakness, or indecision. Especially when it comes to identifying adverse influences and removing them from our lives.

Put a premium on purity. Particularly in regard to sexuality and the media. When it’s filth, have the courage to call it what it is. Don’t tolerate it. You may, as our pastor pointed out, need to do a spiritual detox with the Word and prayer. Again, have the courage.

Solomon said, very succinctly: Bad company corrupts good character.

Realistically assess the people in you life. Family, friends, acquaintances, co-workers. Here are some guidelines identifying 3 types of toxic people:

  • Users. One-sided relationships. These folks use others to validate themselves. They are jealous, which is why they celebrate your failures and covet your successes. What to do? Minimize contact or end the relationship.
  • Abusers. They live toxic lives and don’t care how it affects you. Seeking to sabotage your Christian lifestyle. Actively hostile to your faith. It is shocking how many believers maintain contact with these kinds of people. Have some self-respect and end these relationships.
  • Losers.  Broke, self-destructive, lazy. They are specialists at trying to provoke pity. Their company is guaranteed to exhaust you, which, perversely, causes them to feel better about themselves. Let them go.BeBold

The Bible, always blindingly realistic, provides numerous examples of bad company. It also insists that the follower of Christ be wise, discerning, and bold in maintaining a pollution-free life. For instance, seek out safe relationships with people who:

  • Challenge you. As in encourage, warn, admonish. You need someone in your life with the freedom to say, “Stop being dumb.”
  • Have similar goals. Who share your faith, are children of light. That term, by the way, is biblical. Develop deep and lasting relationships with people headed in the same direction.
  • Encourage your faith. Does this person build you up spiritually? Is your walk stronger after you’ve been with them?

Relationships with good company often have to be intentionally pursued.

So intentionally pursue. You are building a strong, healthy, and productive life for God’s kingdom when you do.

And that’s rather the point, isn’t it? 

In your own life, do you recognize any of the toxic people identified here? If so,what are you willing to do about it?


One response to this post.

  1. Posted by Erin Smith on August 29, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    Such good and prudent advice:) So glad for he wisdom shared here.


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