As we continue ManSchool Lite, this morning we dove into specific guardrails concerning friendships. Recapping from last week, we need a guardrail system around us to protect us from danger. These are things that trigger our conscience to warn us and make us think twice about situations in our life. The problem is that our culture baits you to participate in things that are dangerous and then that same culture chastises you when we falter.
Don’t ask “Is it a sin to (fill in the blank)?” or “Is it ok to (fill in the blank)?” We know that if you have ask that question, you probably shouldn’t do it. The better question is “Where should I place the guardrails to protect me from danger/going too far off the road?”
You need to be cautious of friends that seem to going in the opposite direction. You need to give yourself enough space to avoid the disaster. With friends we tend to drop our guard. The thing that makes friendship so great is the thing that makes it dangerous. You are most open to influence around friends. You close down around rejection but you open up around acceptance. This is why ManSchool small groups are so critical because you are able to open up to friends that are going in the same direction versus being vulnerable and getting crushed by the oncoming traffic of friends going the opposite direction.
We looked at Proverbs 13:20 – “Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm.” The first part is a promise; wisdom is contagious. The second part is the warning. It doesn’t say that being around fools makes you a fool but you can suffer from the shrapnel of the disasters they bring. A fool knows what is right and what is wrong but they just don’t care. It’s foolish to expect your friends that don’t take care of their own marriage, physical health, mental health, spiritual health, etc. to help you take care of yours. This is why we need to be going in the same direction.
Relational guardrails – Your conscience should “light up” or bother you when:
1. Your core group isn’t going in the same direction as you
2. You pretend to be someone else/posing
3. You feel the pressure to compromise. The temptation becomes an option. The guardrail is not doing the behavior but when you consider it.
4. “I’ll go but I won’t participate”. You become guilty by association.
5. You hope the people you care about the most don’t find out where you’ve been or who you were with.
Don’t let your resistance turn into regret because you ignore God and don’t respond to what He’s trying to tell you. Will you face up to what God is calling/telling you to do? Deal with it now because we won’t think about it again until it’s too late.
We will see you next week on Wednesday July 9th.