Proverbs 27:9 “The sweet smell of perfume and oils is pleasant, and so is good advice from a friend.”
When it comes to friends, we want to surround ourselves with people who will lift us up not keep us down. Jesus has used many verses in Proverbs about choosing wise friends because they are they ones who will help our faith grow in Jesus or take us away from Jesus. Who do you surround yourself with?
Einstein once said, “Stay away from people who have a problem to every solution.”
The Bible shares a couple stories about people who can steal your faith just by their actions. Remember when Jairus’ daughter fell sick in Mark 5. Jairus had found Jesus and asked Him to come heal his daughter which Jesus started to head to his house to do. On the way one of Jairus’ servants came and said don’t bother Jesus anymore your daughter is dead. Jairus, I’m sure became sad and his faith a little lost but what Jesus said was so encouraging. Jesus said, “Don’t be afraid only believe.” In other words, keep your faith, hang in there, I’m on my way.
What happens next is of course a miracle. Once at the home Jairus’ friends are crying and making such a fuss, their negativity bringing both Jairus’ and his wife’s faith down. When Jesus sees this, He immediately turns all those negative people out of the house and takes Peter, James, and John into the room of the little girl and her parents. There Jesus heals the little girl and raises her from the dead.
Hang onto your faith, don’t let people tell you otherwise. When you trust Jesus, He will deliver His promises to you. Turn the problem makers away.
We can find another story very similar to that one in Acts 9. A wonderful lady named Tabitha, who made clothes for many and did many acts of kindness had died. When Peter heard of the news, he headed straight to Joppa where he found many widows crying over her death. They showed him all the good things Tabitha had done and mourned loudly. Peter, like Jesus, turned the negative woman away from her home and then went into Tabitha’s bedside and took the matter to the Lord. Again, a miracle. Through Peter, Jesus raised someone else from the dead.
After that when the news spread many found trust in the Lord. Faith in God and what God can do from them if they just hang on and trust. Get the negative people out of their lives.
There are two types of people in this world, some are like vultures and others like hummingbirds. Have you ever watched a vulture? They spend their lives flying around looking for anything they can devour that they know has no future. When you see those birds hanging around you know something is either already dead or on the verge of death and they are just waiting to until it’s finished off.
I know it’s silly shows on TV where someone is in the desert or running out of food and they feel like they are going to die and the first thing they see are the vultures beginning to circle. They know at that point they are finished because that’s the only reason vultures circle. But the truth is that negative people in your life will do just that. They want to tear you down and make you feel you have no hope because they have no hope and feel better when others are miserable too. Misery loves company, right?
Contrast to a vulture, hummingbirds are a wonderful example of who we should surround ourselves with. A hummingbird flies around looking for bright colorful flowers, looking for that sweet nectar or fruit they can get from it. They are also very little and almost always have to keep moving but they never give up, they keep going looking for the next flower to enjoy. We all love to see the hummingbirds and many of us have probably hung something outside our homes to bring them in. Why, because they are sweet little birds that make us smile.
Like hummingbirds those are the people we want to hang around with. People who look for the good in everything, who see the bright colorful flowers and will keep your faith strong and the glass always half full. Who will help you find a solution to every problem and help you to hang in there when times are tough. People who will help you keep moving forward not just give up.
What Jesus is saying most of all when we read Proverbs or those stories in the New Testament is, stay with people who will grow your faith not tear it down. Today are you going to be a hummingbird or vulture and who are you going to surround yourself with?
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