Choosing friends can feel a little like speed dating. We mingle and make judgments about people’s comments and actions so that we can decide which people are worth pursuing. Then comes the awkward stage . . . getting to know each other. It’s so awkward that a lot of people stop at this stage and stay mere acquaintances. Ugh! God never said becoming friends would be easy, He just told us that it was necessary. If we push through this awkward stage, we will find amazing friendships on the other side.
Our intimate friends, the ones we spend the majority of our time with and share most deeply with, will see and influence some of the most intimate places of our lives. Their values, beliefs, words and actions influence us. When we take for granted people’s ability to change how we think and act, it leaves our standards or relationship with God vulnerable. This vulnerability is why it is so important to choose our friends wisely. We must take the time and effort to observe people’s values and character.
It’s not about finding a friend that is a robot of perfection, but it is about surrounding yourself with people who humbly strive to have a heart after God. Are they striving after God? Are they willing to work through hard situations with you? Do they gossip with you or help you heal? Will they give Godly advice, just what you want to hear, or simply their opinion?
True friends are continually pointing out truth, encouraging us, and striving for more of God. As we start to strive for Biblical community, take the time to select friends that influence you to be more like God.