Am I too picky when choosing friends?

Many have told me I am very picky about who I choose for friends. There is a reason for that. Your friends can either build you up or tear you down. I want friends who will build me up and not tear me down. I also want friends who will accept me for who I am and be forgiving as I work through my imperfections as I hopefully will do for them. The bible tells us to let love guide all we do. I look for friends who are not full of hate and let love guide their actions. I want friends who will help me through my short comings and even tell me when I am in error and be forgiving and kind enough to be there for me as I work through them. I want friends who will be there for me through the good times and the bad. Fair weather friends are not real friends they are only in the friendship when it benefits them.

I also want friends who are willing to work through their short comings and who want to grow and draw closer to God. Though it may not be a sin to associate with people who do not want to get to know God and Jesus the bible warns it can draw us away from God. Not only that but often times they do not want to read God’s word because they want to rely on their own understanding which we have been warn can not only draw us away from God it can endanger us spiritually and even physically. By associating with those who rely on their own understanding we could start to imitate their behavior and start relying on our own understanding and it can effect our faith and we could start putting more trust in ourselves instead of God. So we should leave God guide our decisions, even if we have a history of making good decisions we should be cautious we do not get overconfident. This is why you should choose friends that are humble and will help you to remain humble.

Choosing friends who put spiritual things first will help to protect us by keeping us focus on things that last forever , the spiritual treasures. The things on the earth will pass away and be gone but the treasure stored in heaven will last forever. It is difficult now days not having many friends but having a few good friends you can trust is much better then having companions who will destroy you by drawing your sinful nature out or by betraying you.

One way to help determine if they can be a trust worthy friend is sharing God’s word with them or reading the bible with them. How they respond can reveal what is in their hearts. It can help you determine if they prefer to lean on their own understanding or if they may be hiding a sin and do not want to hold themselves accountable. If the scriptures do not appeal to them one of these things may be occurring and we should be cautious. If the person is not growing spiritually we should be cautious. Watching for someone to produce the fruits of the spirit is also another way we can determine if the friend is a good friend.

Experience has taught me often times when someone who does not read and apply God’s word is treating you very kind they usually are either trying to manipulate you or they want something. They become who they believe you would want them to be. So now more then ever we need to be cautious of who we choose to be our friends. We have to remember the whole world lies in the power of the wicked one and there are many wolves in sheep’s clothing. I have included scriptures to meditate on that may help in guiding us when we make knew friends. The bible warned us that bad association can spoil useful habits. Those who do not have faith could slowly get us to start losing our faith. They may be very kind but they could still draw us away from God by slowly getting us to stop our useful habits like praying and studying God’s word.

(Proverbs 18:24) 24 There are companions ready to crush one another, But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

(James 1:14, 15) 14 But each one is tried by being drawn out and enticed by his own desire. 15 Then the desire, when it has become fertile, gives birth to sin; in turn sin, when it has been carried out, brings forth death.

(Proverbs 28:14) 14 Happy is the man who is always on guard, But whoever hardens his heart will fall into calamity.

(1 Corinthians 10:12, 13) 12 So let the one who thinks he is standing beware that he does not fall. 13 No temptation has come upon you except what is common to men. But God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear, but along with the temptation he will also make the way out so that you may be able to endure it.

(Proverbs 27:17) 17 As iron sharpens iron, So one man sharpens his friend.

(Hebrews 3:12, 13) 12 Beware, brothers, for fear there should ever develop in any one of you a wicked heart lacking faith by drawing away from the living God; 13 but keep on encouraging one another each day, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you should become hardened by the deceptive power of sin.

(Hebrews 3:12, 13) 12 Beware, brothers, for fear there should ever develop in any one of you a wicked heart lacking faith by drawing away from the living God; 13 but keep on encouraging one another each day, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you should become hardened by the deceptive power of sin.

(2 Corinthians 6:14-18) 14 Do not become unevenly yoked with unbelievers. For what fellowship do righteousness and lawlessness have? Or what sharing does light have with darkness? 15 Further, what harmony is there between Christ and Beʹli·al? Or what does a believer share in common with an unbeliever? 16 And what agreement does God’s temple have with idols? For we are a temple of a living God; just as God said: “I will reside among them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people.” 17 “‘Therefore, get out from among them, and separate yourselves,’ says Jehovah, ‘and quit touching the unclean thing’”; “‘and I will take you in.’” 18 “‘And I will become a father to you, and you will become sons and daughters to me,’ says Jehovah, the Almighty.”

(John 12:48) 48 Whoever disregards me and does not receive my sayings has one to judge him. The word that I have spoken is what will judge him on the last day. 

(Hebrews 4:11, 12) 11 Let us therefore do our utmost to enter into that rest, so that no one may fall into the same pattern of disobedience. 12 For the word of God is alive and exerts power and is sharper than any two-edged sword and pierces even to the dividing of soul and spirit, and of joints from the marrow, and is able to discern thoughts and intentions of the heart.

(John 3:19-21) . . .. 20 For whoever practices vile things hates the light and does not come to the light, so that his works may not be reproved. 21 But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that his works may be made manifest as having been done in harmony with God.”

(Proverbs 28:26) Whoever trusts in his own heart is stupid, But the one who walks in wisdom will escape.

(Jeremiah 10:23) I well know, O Jehovah, that man’s way does not belong to him. It does not belong to man who is walking even to direct his step.

(1 Corinthians 3:18) Let no one deceive himself: If anyone among you thinks he is wise in this system of things, let him become a fool, so that he may become wise.

(Ecclesiastes 4:9, 10) 9 Two are better than one because they have a good reward for their hard work. 10 For if one of them falls, the other can help his partner up. But what will happen to the one who falls with no one to help him up?

(Proverbs 27:5, 6)  5 Open reproof is better than concealed love.  6 The wounds inflicted by a friend are faithful, But an enemy’s kisses are plentiful.

(Proverbs 17:17) 17 A true friend shows love at all times And is a brother who is born for times of distress.

(James 4:4-6) 4 Adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever, therefore, wants to be a friend of the world is making himself an enemy of God. 5 Or do you think that for no reason the scripture says: “The spirit that has taken up residence within us keeps enviously longing”? 6 However, the undeserved kindness that He gives is greater. So it says: “God opposes the haughty ones, but he gives undeserved kindness to the humble ones.”

(Colossians 3:12-14) 12 Accordingly, as God’s chosen ones, holy and loved, clothe yourselves with the tender affections of compassion, kindness, humility, mildness, and patience. 13 Continue putting up with one another and forgiving one another freely even if anyone has a cause for complaint against another. Just as Jehovah freely forgave you, you must also do the same. 14 But besides all these things, clothe yourselves with love, for it is a perfect bond of union.

(Mark 12:28-31) . . .” 29 Jesus answered: “The first is, ‘Hear, O Israel, Jehovah our God is one Jehovah, 30 and you must love Jehovah your God with your whole heart and with your whole soul and with your whole mind and with your whole strength.’ 31 The second is this, ‘You must love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”

(1 Corinthians 15:32-34) . . .” 33 Do not be misled. Bad associations spoil useful habits. 34 Come to your senses in a righteous way and do not practice sin, for some have no knowledge of God. I am speaking to move you to shame.

(Proverbs 13:20) The one walking with the wise will become wise, But the one who has dealings with the stupid will fare badly

(Galatians 5:7-9) 7 You were running well. Who hindered you from continuing to obey the truth? 8 This sort of persuasion does not come from the One calling you. 9 A little leaven ferments the whole batch of dough.

(Proverbs 19:6, 7)  6 Many seek the favor of a noble, And everyone is a friend to the man who gives gifts.  7 All the brothers of a poor man hate him; How much more he is shunned by his friends! He pursues them with requests, but no one responds.

(Galatians 6:1-5) 6 Brothers, even if a man takes a false step before he is aware of it, you who have spiritual qualifications try to readjust such a man in a spirit of mildness. But keep an eye on yourself, for fear you too may be tempted. 2 Go on carrying the burdens of one another, and in this way you will fulfill the law of the Christ. 3 For if anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he is deceiving himself. 4 But let each one examine his own actions, and then he will have cause for rejoicing in regard to himself alone, and not in comparison with the other person. 5 For each one will carry his own load.

(Proverbs 20:19) 19 A slanderer goes about revealing confidential talk; Do not associate with one who loves to gossip.

(Proverbs 25:9) Plead your case with your neighbor, But do not reveal what you were told confidentially,

(Proverbs 25:23) The north wind brings a downpour, And a gossiping tongue brings an angry face.

(Galatians 5:22-24) 22 On the other hand, the fruitage of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, 23 mildness, self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Moreover, those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed to the stake the flesh together with its passions and desires.

(Proverbs 1:7)  7 The fear of Jehovah is the beginning of knowledge. Only fools despise wisdom and discipline.

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