I wish I could tell you how many people I have met through the years whose lives are a mess, and when I ask them what happened they say, “I got with the wrong crowd.” The Bible is right in I Corinthians 15:33, “Bad company will corrupt good character.” Right now Virginia and I have an acquaintance in another town who has been very active in her church, has great kids, a decent marriage, but she quit going to church for some reason at 40 years of age and went crazy and out of control. Her first step of self-destruction occurred when she went to visit a local bar with some girlfriends on their weekly girls’ night out. Most of her friends were single, and it wasn’t long before she had an affair, left her husband and her kids and her whole world has been turned upside down. She finally came to her senses, but she has lost so much. She is struggling to rebuild her life. She isn’t a bad person. She got to hanging with the wrong crowd, made some bad choices. Remember that none of us are strong enough to be faithful to Christ on our own without a strong community of faithful people around us to hold us accountable. Peter wrote, “Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him.” Don’t be careless in your associations. Find a strong small group, a great Christian community. Hang out with those who make your life better. Avoid those who make your life worse.
– Dr. Tim Thompson