I try to be a good Christian, and I suppose people who don't know me very well would say I am. But when I get around some of my old friends I forget all about Jesus and my behavior changes. What's wrong with me? God must be very disappointed in me.
Do you remember Simon Peter in the New Testament? He was one of Jesus’ closest disciples, and when Jesus predicted that Peter would deny Him, Peter boldly replied, “Even if I have to die with you, I will never disown you” (Mark 14:31).
But when Jesus was arrested, Peter found himself surrounded by a group of strangers – and when some of them asked if he too was one of Jesus’ followers, he vehemently denied it – not once, but three times. And yet Jesus forgave him, and Peter went on to become a strong witness for the Gospel. I pray this will be your experience.
Have you ever asked yourself why your old friends have so much influence over you? The reason, I suspect, is because you don’t want them to reject you. Instead you want them to accept you – and the easiest way to do that is to act the same way they do. But the Bible warns, “Do not be misled: ‘Bad company corrupts good character'” (1 Corinthians 15:33).
The real question is this: What place does Jesus Christ have in your life? Is His approval more important to you than that of your friends? Make sure of your commitment to Christ. Remember: He loves you so much that He gave His life for you. Keep your eyes on Christ, and let your friends know that you now belong to Him – even if it means risking their rejection.