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Topic: Peer Pressure (07/05/04)
TITLE: Positive Peer Pressure
By Clay Drysdale
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We've all heard sermons and read books on the importance of standing up for God's principles, instead of the world's. We know we're not supposed to participate in office gossip, take questionable deductions on our tax returns, or keep money that we saw someone drop. We all face situations like these everyday. As Christians we're called to set a higher standard than the world has.
But if we know we're supposed to be different than the world, do we know what it is that we're supposed to be? If we know we're not supposed to model ourselves after the world, where do we go to learn who or what to model ourselves after? The answer is found right in the Bible when the writer of Hebrews warns us about "not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another" (Heb. 10:25 NKJV). We must spend time around other believers if we are to have the right attitude and focus.
We may be a Christian, but if we never associate with other Christians, our faith runs the risk of drying up. Without regular interaction with other believers, we don't have a Jesus-like character pool from which to draw. We need the fellowship of other believers in order to help us "work out our salvation" (Phil. 2:12). That's why God tells us we need to meet together regularly. God knows that Satan knows that a Christian is much weaker if he doesn't have the support, love, and companionship of others.
When we go to church, our main focus should be to worship God. We should concentrate on His goodness and righteousness. But church attendance has the other function of helping assimilate the new believer (or old one) into the body of Christ. Sunday school (or bible fellowship, as many churches now call it) is wonderful for helping to build one-on-one relationships. It is in the small group setting where relationships can begin to grow and develop.
Along the way, we often find a mentor in our church who will guide us and help us in our daily walk. A seasoned Christian's wisdom is a stored treasure waiting to be tapped. We should all pray to find someone like that who is willing to be a role model for us.
Now that's peer pressure!