Sunday, February 08, 2009

Sphere of Influence

After having spent a couple of months with the presence of Facebook in our lives, it's got me thinking. How many of the decisions I've made have been influenced or motivated by the folks I've chosen to keep company with: my community, my circle of friends - my "sphere of influence"? Last night, in bed, I started accumulating a list of things that could possibly be different if I were around different friends.....

1. How we handle our finances; i.e. credit card debt, envelope plans, college savings, extravagant vacations?
2. Would we be homeschooling, or having our children attend private schools?
3. TV viewing: at all, reality shows, soap operas, evening dramas, late night comedy?
4. Extra curricular activities for our kids- participation in certain sports, AWANAS, boy/girl scouts, at all?
5. Reading material: Christian nonfiction only, Christian fiction, anything else - or even gossip magazines?
6. The responsible consumption of alcohol- never or done with appropriate moderation?
7. Movie viewing: G, PG, PG13, and what you allow your children to see?
8. The specific denomination and style of the church we choose to attend?
9. Involvement (or not) in Bible studies or ministry activities?
10. Clothing, hair, and make-up: Keeping up with styles, professional hair colorings, etc?

I know there's a ton more, I believe I had quite a list going in bed last night, but it really was a fascinating thought process I was on. If I lived in Dallas, in Michele's community, what might be different? If I lived down in Medford, near some of my friends from college, what might be different?

It does make me ever so thankful for the wonderful and positive company that we do keep. And, makes me ever-mindful to make sure that when it comes time for deep decision making, John and I are doing it based on what we believe God has in mind for us and not based on whatever "everyone else" is doing......


Anonymous said...

I've been thinking about this too. It has actually had me trying to figure out how to distance myself from some of my friends. I know that I need to be a witness to them, but more often than not I end up buckling to their interests. Sometimes I wish we could move so that we could start over and really be picky about our friends. But then I realized that we can't be picky about the people God puts in our lives. We just have to be picky about what we choose to do with them.

StephieAnne said...

Wow, so well said, Bonnie!

Growin' with it! said...

kinda makes me feel like i've hopefully grown up a little too! i think about stuff like this often. how would i have turned out if i had followed this or that path with him/her. thank the Lord for how he "keeps" us!

Beverly said...

Wow, Steph. I've been thinking along these same lines lately because I've been really focused on my attitude of gratitude.

I just want someone to say, someday, that they are in a better place because I was in their "sphere of influence!"