Q: I must be the worst Christian in the world. I really believe in Jesus and I want to do what’s right, but every time I get around my old friends I forget all about Jesus and end up following the crowd. How can I stop being so weak? — Z.N.
A: You’re right; God doesn’t want you to be spiritually weak or to yield to temptation every time it comes your way. The Bible says, “Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes” (Ephesians 6:10-11).
Do you remember Peter in the New Testament? He was one of Jesus’ closest followers, and yet when Jesus was arrested, to those who asked him, Peter denied that he was a disciple or even knew Jesus — not once, but three times. (You can read about this in Matthew 26.) And yet Peter later became one of the strongest and most courageous Christians the world has ever known.
What happened? First, Peter realized what he had done, and he repented of it. Then Peter surrounded himself with other believers, and together they strengthened each other and grew in their faith. Peter also witnessed for Christ and let others know of Christ’s love for them.
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Like Peter, turn to Christ and ask for his forgiveness and help. Then leave your old friends behind; they’ll only pull you down (perhaps deliberately). Take seriously the Bible’s admonition: “Do not be misled: ‘Bad company corrupts good character’ ” (1 Corinthians 15:33). In addition, get involved in a church where you’ll hear God’s Word and be surrounded by believers who can help you. Also, take your stand for Christ by telling others that you are now a follower of Jesus.
Write to the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201 or go to BillyGraham.org.