Dear brothers and sisters, pattern your lives after mine, and learn from those who follow our example. For I have told you often before, and I say it again with tears in my eyes, that there are many whose conduct shows they are really enemies of the cross of Christ.
Philippians 3:17-18 NLT
One of the great truths I learned early in my life was, “Show me your friends and I’ll show you your future!” The longer I have lived the truer this statement has become. I have watched this play out in so many people’s lives. If your closest friends are divorced, there is a good chance you will get a divorce. If your closest friends don’t attend church on a regular basis, there is a good chance you will not attend church on a regular basis. If your closest friends drink too much, there is a good chance you will drink too much. Paul understood this principle two thousand years ago. He challenged his readers to “pattern your lives after mine.” This was not a statement of pride or arrogance. Paul simply wanted them to choose him as their model of serving Jesus. Paul understood “there are many whose conduct shows they are really enemies of the cross of Christ.” We must make daily decisions of who or what will get our attention. In our present culture there are times when the social or news media shape our thinking. For example, every Sunday morning I get a message from my phone telling me how much screen time I have had that week and what apps I spent the most time on. It is interesting this always pops up while I’m in church. It is almost like I’m being reminded of how much time I spent on social media and news media compared to how much time I spent in worship and with the Word. Who, or what, is shaping your thinking?
Holy Spirit please help me to choose my friends wisely. Help me to allow You to direct the usage of my time.
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