Tell Me Who You Hang Out With, And I’ll Tell You Who You Are

“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” Prov. 27:17

A couple of days ago, I had the opportunity to go back to my native country – the Dominican Republic. The motive of my trip was to handle a family situation. In the middle of the pandemic and with a mandatory curfew,  I didn’t have many expectations of the trip, but what I did have was the deep desire of meeting with my friends.

My friends, some of which I grew up with, and others who I met in college, are very close to my heart. They’re girls with whom I did life with for a long time; they know my strengths and weaknesses, and they accept me just as I am. They’re the people I get together with to laugh, and to whom I run when I want to cry.

This time was no different, we laughed a lot – so many stories and memories told – and cried as well – confessions and goodbyes we had to say. Meditating on this, I realized that the people who surround us will have a great impact on our lives, for good or for evil.

As Christians, we should be wise in choosing our friends because these will be the closest people to us who are going to influence how our thoughts and beliefs are shaped. When we do life with someone else, without realizing it, we are shaping one another. “Tell me who you hang out with and I’ll tell you who you are” is an old Dominican saying implying that the person you spend your time with, will define you.

It’s not that we ought to have friends identical to us, or that they should copy our personality. It means that as children of God, we should ask Him for friends with the same mindset, that share our same values. These girls, my friends, even though each has chosen a different path, their essence is still the same: young ladies, that in their surroundings, seek to have personal growth and to contribute to our society.

We must have sound judgment about who we invite to the intimacy of our lives, and show the nakedness of our hearts, the Bible warns: “Do not be misled:<Bad company corrupts good character>”.   1 Co.15:3

This doesn’t mean that it would be better not to have friends; friendships are mentioned in many passages of the Bible, which means they’re important; even the Lord Jesus called his disciples his friends. Friendships are a gift of God, relationships with people we could do life with, to whom we can trust our failures and successes. When we serve and work together we make friendships, and many times these are the people God places in our lives to help us discover our talents and guide us through His will.

What we need are friendships that help us bring glory to God, friends who we may honor, and who we’re able to trust. Look around you today, would you consider it a privilege if someone would use your friends to define you?

“Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm.” Prov. 13:20

About the author: Anyeline is a mom to one, lover of Jesus, and enjoys a great cup of coffee. She is originally from the Dominican Republic, but is now a proud U.S. citizen. When visiting our church, you can find her teaching our young adult women or helping out in children’s ministry. She always has a smile and a warm greeting for friends and strangers alike.