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๐‘ฎ๐’‚๐’๐’‚๐’•๐’Š๐’‚๐’๐’” 5:7-9 (๐‘ฌ๐‘บ๐‘ฝ)
“๐’€๐’๐’– ๐’˜๐’†๐’“๐’† ๐’“๐’–๐’๐’๐’Š๐’๐’ˆ ๐’˜๐’†๐’๐’. ๐‘พ๐’‰๐’ ๐’‰๐’Š๐’๐’…๐’†๐’“๐’†๐’… ๐’š๐’๐’– ๐’‡๐’“๐’๐’Ž ๐’๐’ƒ๐’†๐’š๐’Š๐’๐’ˆ ๐’•๐’‰๐’† ๐’•๐’“๐’–๐’•๐’‰? ๐‘ป๐’‰๐’Š๐’” ๐’‘๐’†๐’“๐’”๐’–๐’‚๐’”๐’Š๐’๐’ ๐’Š๐’” ๐’๐’๐’• ๐’‡๐’“๐’๐’Ž ๐’‰๐’Š๐’Ž ๐’˜๐’‰๐’ ๐’„๐’‚๐’๐’๐’” ๐’š๐’๐’–. ๐‘จ ๐’๐’Š๐’•๐’•๐’๐’† ๐’๐’†๐’‚๐’—๐’†๐’ ๐’๐’†๐’‚๐’—๐’†๐’๐’” ๐’•๐’‰๐’† ๐’˜๐’‰๐’๐’๐’† ๐’๐’–๐’Ž๐’‘.”
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Anyone feel like they are drifting in here? Would you notice if you were?
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Swimming in the Atlantic Ocean one summer, the waves were super fun and strong. I had not noticed a rip tide nor the fact that I was being pulled far away from where I had started until I looked to spot my umbrella on the shore.
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It was nowhere.
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That moment of panic that hits as you try to gauge just how far you have drifted to assess your situation while chastising yourself for not noticing sooner is quelled once you see that familiar benchmark and start to plan your way back.
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But what if there is no benchmark? No measure to discern whether or not we have strayed? Oh, then, we would be lost at sea.
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We might not be lost at sea, but we can sure get lost in this life and culture, can’t we? Like waves that push us around, there is a confluence of influence in our lives, constantly dragging us away from what we know to be true.
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You can’t hardly open your eyes without influence breathing it’s values and persuasion all around us. The radio, the television, the internet, the people all around us are exerting an influence upon our souls.
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It can make a soul tired. It can wear anyone down if we are not ready for it.
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The confluence of influence is not easily detected. It is constant. Often hidden. And sometimes accepted in its camouflage.
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And this influence is nothing new. Scripture warns us to be careful of the company we keep, but we often attribute that just to people. The company we keep can take many forms.
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What are we allowing into our minds, our souls, our homes?
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And are we aware that we drift by degrees?
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Our enemy is subtle. It might start with a little compromise. Or political correctness. But it is not until we recognize the influences in our lives and then measure them by the word of God that we can see how far we’ve drifted.
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Like that umbrella on the shore, that did not move, God’s word, God’s promises, God’s character don’t change.
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Stand firm, friends. Don’t drift. Drifting can have devastating consequences. What causes the drift in your life? What are the waves pushing and pulling you away?
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โ€ข Is it your circle of friends? (1 Corinthians 15:33)
โ€ข Is it what you watch or listen to in your own home? (Psalm 101:1-3)
โ€ข Is it being unequally yoked? (2 Corinthians 6:14)
โ€ข Is it our own heart? (Jeremiah 17:9)
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As it says in Hebrews 3:12-15, “12 See to it, brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. 13 But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called โ€œToday,โ€ so that none of you may be hardened by sinโ€™s deceitfulness. 14 We have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original conviction firmly to the very end.”
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Avoiding negative influences is only part of the solution. We need to pour positive influences into our lives.
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โ€ข Don’t be a negative influence yourself. (1 John 3:10)
โ€ข Replace the negative influence with a positive one. (Proverbs 13:20)
โ€ข Read the word of God – cry out for understanding. (Joshua 1:8)
โ€ข Listen to teachings that encourage you. (Phil 4:8)
โ€ข Be accountable. (James 5:16)
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We can do all these things through Christ. Catch the drift before it pulls you away.

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