Who are you influenced by? We live in a world now where someone’s job is to influence you to buy products from companies. Beyond that, there are people who influence every area of your life. There are people who influence how you speak, where you go, how you act and more. The list goes on. Do you remember your parents telling you that you will become like those you run with? They were right. We’re influenced by the people we’re around for good or bad. They are the ones whom we give the power to influence our thinking, our decision making and our relationship with God. The people we’re around will either draw us closer to God or push us further away.
In 1 Kings 12, Solomon’s son Rehoboam had become king. The leaders of Israel requested a meeting with him. They told him that his father worked them to the bone, and asked if he would lighten their load. In return, they would be loyal subjects. Rehoboam went to his father’s advisors. They agreed that he should ease restrictions and have peace. Then he went to his friends. They gave him the opposite advice. They thought he should add more work and prove he was greater than his father. When he went with their advice, the people revolted and the kingdom split. They way he judged the people around him cost him dearly.
2 Corinthians 5:16 says, “So we have stopped evaluating others from a human point of view. At one time we thought of Christ merely from a human point of view. How differently we know him now!” (NLT) The word “evaluating” here means to judge or to be influenced by. We can’t judge or be influenced by people from a worldly point of view. We must hold the people we allow into our lives to a higher standard. We run the risk of a split kingdom in our lives when we allow the wrong people to have influence on our decision making. Are the people you’re around drawing you closer to God or are they causing you to blur lines you would have never blurred before? As believers, we must have a different set of evaluation tools than the world. We know Christ and the standards in His Word. The people around us should be influencing us to be more like Him.