If everyone else was jumping off a bridge
The story is legendary in my family: One family member convincing his cousin to relieve himself on an electric fence.
What’s the stupidest thing you’ve done because someone else was doing it?
If only our answers could stay on the entertaining side of things. But for most of us—an honest reply would include stuff that truly hurt others, and maybe even some deep-seated regret.
Are you married but still hanging out with guys who are on the prowl? How will their behavior affect your thought life? What temptations will you expose yourself to?
Do you commiserate with girlfriends about how clueless men are? How does it impact your ability to be thankful? What positive qualities will you overlook?
Detecting the impact of peer pressure doesn’t require a degree in forensics, for sure. But noticing it in your own life is often harder. Ephesians 5:7-10 (below) warns believers to no longer be “partners” with sexually immoral, impure, or covetous people. The word for “partners” can also be translated as co-participant; a partaker.
This doesn’t mean that we must break off all ties with our old friends. But it does mean the nature of our relationships has to change. If our old friends are living a lifestyle contrary to God, we can no longer participate in the way we once did. We may need to excuse ourselves from certain situations. It’s not to project a “holier than thou” attitude, but to make sure our presence influences our friends for their good … and not the other way around.
This means asking ourselves some tough questions. Because the company you keep matters.
For more, listen to “Resisting Peer Pressure.”
THE GOOD STUFF: Therefore do not become partners with them; for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. (Ephesians 5:7-10)
ACTION POINTS: Find couples whose walk with God is strong and whose marriages you admire. Spend as much time with them as you can. Invite them over for dinner. Arrange playdates between your kids. Join a marriage group at church or start one yourself. Find ways of hanging out with mature believers who are walking with God and can help you to “walk as a child of the light,” too.
Visit the FamilyLife® Website