I think we need to be carful not somuch of who we choose but on who influences us. Jesus was always at most points with sinners , how ever he was the influencer . His faith nevered wavered. If the friends we pick are a bad influence than we need to change friends.
I think we need to develop friendships at all levels. We have many different types, from family, to lifelong friends, to our church friends, to work friends. BUt what they all need to see is that you are different and know you belong to God and that cannot be compromised
There are definitely different types of friendships. Some are seasonal, and come and go. Some are lifers, and are closer than family. We should experience all types of friendship, as we were created for relationship. We should also be careful that each friendship is God-honoring. Even people who don’t know us well should see something in us that points to Christ.
There are different levels of friendship according to the environment, career, professional so as Christians we need to be careful with many friends, but for me have friends in church and outside the church, only best friend to me is Jesus christ.
There are friendships determined by a level of trust. We are to gain friends by being friendly. If I am to minister to others, then I will seek to develop the friendship that the person gains a relationship with Christ. My relationship with church family, biological family, and coworkers will be different. In ministry, some friendships will be restrictive in order to say what thus say the Lord.
Friendships, as with all relationship, can prove to be complicated and usually have “levels”.
Someone once explained friendships to me as Jesus having his followers (lots of people who knew of him), then he had his 12 disciples (those he spent the most time with), then he had his few (those closest to him).
I think that as our circle closes in, the ones that are closest to us are the ones who we should be most restrictive with.
However, as Christians, I do think that we walk a line between looking to the world that we are being too exclusive vs. making choices to be in places and around activities that may tarnish our testimony.
I would think the first level are my acquaintances, people that I know, but don’t really fellowship with much. The second level will be really close friends who I can share troubles or concerns and I know they would pray for me. The third will be those so close that they know me better than I know myself, like my husband, kids, family members. I think we should seek at all levels but being careful to set the godly boundaries Jesus calls us to.
For me it’s really hard. I don’t have many friends. I do have what I call many acquaintances, both Christian and worldly. I don’t know if it’s personal choice or a time issue, but I really don’t have anyone outside of my wife.
What comes to my mind are close friends (or even people we consider “family”), friends, and acquaintances. We should definitely be mindful and intentional about how deep we go within the levels of our relationships to people, recognizing that it is so important that people who are TRUE friends are those we should be equally yoked with.
There are many different levels of friendship. I think a Christian should be careful with who they allow into the inner circle of their friendship. Because those people have the most clear impact on their life.