I want to share with you the importance of surrounding yourself with the right people. Oprah Winfrey had a quote that she used a few years ago that stated, “Surround yourself only with people who are going to lift you higher.” This is something that we must take seriously if we are to become all that God intended.
I had the pleasure of attending an honors program for some of the children at my church. While at the honors program, I saw just how detrimental the impact of surrounding ourselves with the wrong people can be. One of the young men from my church was ashamed to stand up and receive his award for his accomplishments because his peers who he was sitting with were teasing him.
This is the same young man that I had to discipline at church for being disruptive and disrespectful during Bible study. I had already drawn my conclusion of him based on the people that he surrounded himself with. He was always hanging with the kids at church who were my most challenging youth. And, because they were always getting in trouble, I thought that was who he was as well. The honors program opened my eyes to something different. What I saw that day was a young man who was tainted by the people that he surrounded himself with.
The first thing that hit me was the fact that it is a sad day in our society when you are teased for being smart and wanting to do something positive with your life. The second thing that hit me was the fact that people can be easily influenced by the wrong crowd. I have not had the opportunity to speak with this young man, but it is in my plans to speak with him about changing the company that he keeps. What that situation also taught me is that dreams can be aborted and left for dead all because of the company that we keep.
The question I have for you this month is, “Who are you surrounded by?” I am convinced that it is imperative that we make some changes to our surroundings if we want to succeed in this thing called life. Are the people who you are surrounded by helping or hindering you? Are they an asset or a liability? Are they pushing you into purpose or into pain? Can you really say that you are growing and becoming better because of them? If you can’t answer positively to these questions, you need to change your surroundings. I believe that one of the main reasons why we aren’t where we could or should be is because of the people in our surroundings. We don’t always surround ourselves with the right people who are going to lift us higher.
I am learning more and more each day that life can be bitter or sweet depending on whom we surround ourselves with. I have learned to surround myself with people who can bring the best out of me and with those who have my best interest at heart. If you and I are serious about becoming all God created us to be, we have to surround ourselves with the right people. So, check your surroundings and see if those who are in your circle are lifting you higher or bringing you down. Don’t allow your dreams and aspirations to be aborted and left for dead all because of the company you keep.