A friend will do his best to prevent you from driving off a cliff.
Your enemy will give you directions to the cliff and happily watch you plunge to your destruction.
A friend cares enough to caution you about financial decisions or bad investments. Your enemy will be glad to see you lose your money. Your friend will warn you about a snake in the path. Your enemy will tell you to enjoy your walk.
A friend cares enough to help.
Your enemy will let you sink.
Thirty years ago, I made a move. I had a house payment in one town and an apartment rent in my new location. I had two car payments, a very sick wife and two small children. The financial burden was tough. I met with a group of eight to 10 men every Thursday morning at 6 a.m. for prayer. These men prayed for me but came to me one day and said, “We’re going to collect $300 to $400 a month to give to you until you sell your house. I was surprised, thankful but declined the offer. They insisted. One man spoke up and said, “We’re not going to sit here and watch you sink.” I was very close to just giving my house back to the bank but fortunately I was eventually able to sell it and gain enough money to make a down payment on a house in my new location.
Your friend may not be able to save you. However, your friend will try to save you from sinking. Your enemy will find humor in your demise.
Your friend will not barrage you with your past mistakes. A real friend puts the past behind and moves forward. The only good thing about remembering mistakes is that you won’t repeat them. Your enemy delights in rehashing ancient history when you failed, divorced, folded, went crazy and more. Your friend will focus with you on today. They will celebrate your current life and activities.
The Bible says the Devil is like a roaring lion seeking whom he might devour. Often, his most effective work is discouraging us and immobilizing our lives. The work of God is forgiving, forgetting, cleansing, burying and looking ahead to the goal line. The work of evil is to take you back to your old sins and failures.
The Bible talks about forgetting those things which are behind. The Scriptures teach that God through Christ cleanses us of all our sins. He buries our sins in the depths of the sea to be remembered no more. God doesn’t remember them, so why do you worry about a failure that happened a hundred years ago?
Remember Lot’s wife? She looked back and turned into a pillar of salt. Looking back turns us into salt or immobilizes us from going forward. You can’t go forward looking over your shoulder. The Bible says press toward the goal line. This means you look forward.
Choose who you spend time your time with very carefully. Live looking forward and avoid those who want to keep you looking back.
Dr. Glenn Mollette is an author and his column is published in over 600 publications in all 50 states.