(The following is a family devotional guide with suggested questions and scriptures.)
T-Talk About It Topic
Friends, friends, and more friends! This week, we are going to talk about the types of friends we have. Some friendships can be very good for us, while others aren’t. I want to draw some boundaries when it comes to friendships; these boundaries can help you pick people who will pour good into your lives. They can always show you people to be cautious about. Lastly, these boundaries can become a big red flag to alert you to people you want to distance yourself from.
Tell me some qualities of a good friend. What friends of yours have any of these qualities?
Now, tell me some qualities of a person who would not be acting as a good friend.
Would you consider yourself to be a good friend to others? Tell me a few things you do to show you are a good friend.
We will be drawing lines for not only the types of friends I would like for you to have, but also the type of friend I hope you are as well!
A-Anchor To The Bible
Let’s return to what we discussed last week in Matthew 12: 33-37: Believers are the good trees that produce good fruit. The “fruit” is living out our faith through our words and actions. Our words and our actions reflect our hearts. If we profess to be believers, our words and actions will show it.
Point: Our words (our “fruit”) will reveal who we really are.
Now, let’s apply this idea to our friendships:
Good friends are the good trees that produce good fruit. The “fruit” is they way they act and talk. Their words and actions reflect their hearts. Bad friends are the bad trees that produce bad fruit. These would be people we don’t want to hang out with, based upon their words and actions.
Point: We want to surround ourselves with good trees because the people we hang out with effect the way we live our lives.
So, what is the “good fruit” we should be looking for? We will talk about that next!
Mama, take a piece of paper and list the standards you have for your child’s friends. In other words, what types of qualities would you like to see your kiddos’ friends to have? (Or, what types of people do you want to see your kiddo pick to be a friend?)
Next, see how your standards match up to God’s Standards for our language (read Romans 12:10, Proverbs 27:17, 1 Thessalonians 5:11, Proverbs 17:17, Proverbs 12:26, Proverbs 27:6, Proverbs 11:13, Colossians 3:13, and 2 Corinthians 6:14 to see what the Word says about friendship).
Lastly, draw the Line. This means, Mama, you take your standards and God’s standards and write out your boundary line(s) for this area. In other words, this is the rule.
L-Learn God’s Word
Our friends, our really good friends, impact who we are…how we talk, act, and think (just think about the times you have said the same thing or react the same as your friends!). Good, bad, or ugly, they shape and mold our personality. That is why memorizing this verse is very important:
Walk with wise people and become wise; befriend fools and get in trouble. -Proverbs 13:20 (CEB)
We want to surround ourselves with people who stay within the boundaries Mom and God have set forth; if you become lax, you will find yourself hanging out with people who talk or act in a way you aren’t allowed to. If you are around them often enough, chances are you will, too. So, this verse is a great reminder to surround ourselves with like-minded people, who have the same beliefs and values we do. That way, you and your friends can be more like “iron striking iron” and become better through each other’s encouragement and advice!
K-Keep Each Other Accountable
This is the most valuable step of any Faith TALK! It’s focused on keeping everyone accountable with this week’s Faith TALK, as well as the memory verse. Here are a few ideas to keep everyone in check:
- Encourage this saying: Be the friend you want to have! Hold them accountable to stay within the boundaries set forth for their friends. (If they want a loyal friend, they must be a loyal friend. If they want a loving friend, they must be a loving friend.) P.S.: Friendship can start with their siblings!
- Talk about the friend qualities that are opposite of your standards and God’s standards: not loving, disrespectful, discouraging, disloyal, gives bad advice, brutally honest, shares your secrets, unforgiving, or an unbeliever.
- Pray for godly friends for your children. Pray your kiddos would stay within their boundaries when choosing to put time into a relationship.
- Write the memory verse on a chalkboard and display it by the door. Have them say the verse each morning and initial they did so.