2009-10-20 - Playing with Pigs
My husband and recently enjoyed a trip to the State Fair. There was an amazing array of delicious food, exciting rides and informative exhibits. One thing that we especially enjoyed was being up close and personal with farm animals. Fair visitors were allowed to go into the barns where the animals were prepared for the shows, and we were inches away from bovine and porcine critters who were being gussied up with haircuts, brushings and the like. After a deliglhtful day at the Fair, we returned home to find a very happy Pierre (our dog); he was as thrilled to see us, as we were to be reunited with him. But I noticed that he took particular pleasure in sniffing my feet and shins, and I realized that with his extraordinary nose, he was discovering that I had been playing with pigs, cows and chickens!! He knew by my scents, the company that I had been keeping!
And I thought, thats much like the Christian life, isnt it? We often pick up the scents of those we spend time with, whether during our leisure time, at work, in our homes or even at church. We can pick up fragrant scents or stinky ones. The more time we spend with folks who curse, who disrespect God or His word or church, who make jokes that belittle others, or who have a pessemistic mindset, the more likely we are to start doing those things ourselves.
1 Corinthians 15:33 (NIV) Do not be misled: "Bad company corrupts good character."
Conversely, the more time we spend with people who have faith-affirming habits, the more likely we are to emulate those people.
Does this mean we are to shun non-Christians, or seal ourselves off in insulated communities with no contact with those heathens? Absolutely not in fact, we cant stay true to the Great Commission of sharing our faith if we do. However, it does mean that we need to be prayerful and judicious about our companions in this life, and certainly our closest friends should be sisters and brothers of our faith.