Influences. As we're growing up, we meet different kinds of people. People that have loads in common with us. People who are Christians. People who are waaay different from us. People we just flat out don't like. And there are lots more, obviously.
Okay. Now, I want you to get a pen and paper. Rule a line down a third of the page, then another so that you have three parts. Now, write at the top of the first side "Friends who influence me to do the right thing". On the next side, write "Friends who influence me to do the wrong thing". And, on the last side, "Friends I don't how they influence me."
NOW -- I want you to think of all the people you consider friends, and put them on either side of the list...
Okay. You done that? Have a look at the list. Which side is the most full?
If your "Good influence" side was pretty full, nice job. It's really important, especially at our age, to choose our friends really, really really carefully. Those people on the "Bad influence" side of the page -- well, there's nothing wrong with being friends with them. But definitely don't start spending too much time with them, because you know what? It's going to be very easy for them to pull you down to their level. Read this next passage from Christy Miller, for example...
Katie, you are such a strong Christian," the teacher said, " That you are going to influence Peter Pagan for good. You're going to bring him to the Lord. Go ahead. You pull Peter up to the chair where you stand. Go ahead, pull harder.
Katie yanked and tugged, but Rick barely moved.
"Not so easy, is it? Now, Peter Pagan (Ohh, if you haven't read this book, Peter and Rick are the same!), try your influence on Katie. You bring her down to your level.
With one quick tug, Katie toppled off the chair, and literally fell into Rick's arms. His quick reflexes allowed him to catch her with a solid thud, before both of them chrashed to the floor.
See how easy it is? We try hard as we can, but they don't budge. But, with one quick tug, we're down there. Influenced the wrong way.
Girlz, choose your friends carefully. If your girlfriends are out there, doing stuff you don't want to do -- leave. And remember one thing, one thing I always forget, but I want to remember it -- God is always by our side. Always. He'll never leave us. Never, ever. So, even when you feel so alone that you figure you must be the most alone person on the planet -- remember that God is right there, by your side. Talk to Him. Be a friend.
Luv, Emii. xox