He who walks with wise men will be wise, but the companion of fools will be destroyed. Proverbs 13:20 (NKJV)
If you hang around wise people, it’ll make you wiser, according to today’s verse.
This verse also contains a warning for those of us who choose to hang around people who make foolish decisions.
For example, let’s say that you’re trying to position yourself for advancement at work. If you surround yourself with coworkers who slack off every chance they get, they will negatively affect you. You may need to distance yourself from these people.
The same is true if you’re trying to build a new habit or ditch an old, destructive one. I’m not suggesting that you drop every friend who thinks differently than you do, but if you’re trying to initiate change in your life, you have to be willing to take an honest look at how the people around you are either helping or hurting your efforts.
Please don’t misunderstand. I’m not talking about bailing on people who are struggling. We need to be an encouragement to those who are going through tough times. On the other hand, sometimes people who are struggling aren’t interested in doing anything to better their situation. Instead, they seem to want you to join them in their situation. When friends aren’t interested in working out? their problems and they tend to influence you to make decisions you later regret, don’t allow them to remain in your trusted, inner circle.
Even Jesus chose His inner circle carefully. Examine your friends’ characteristics, because most likely those same attributes will rub off on you.