“Nobody was sorry when [King Jehoram] died.” (2 Chronicles 21:20 GNT)
We’re all going to be influenced by someone in our lives, for no one is born knowing what to do. For most of us, that first influence may have been our parents. We’re also shaped by our culture and the people we grew up around. As we get older, whether we realize it or not, we may actually start choosing the influences in our lives. It may be a celebrity or a politician that we look up to. The bottom line is that the folks we spend time with, talk to and look up to, will influence not only how we act, but how we set our goals, which can in turn affect our future. Tell me who your friends are and I will be able to tell you a lot about you. Whom do you run with? Who’s in your posse? Whomever you set as your model is going to influence you.
In our Scripture reading for today, we see the sad example of King Jehoram of Judah, whom no one mourned upon his death because he had turned away from his godly heritage and chosen instead to model himself after King Ahab, the most wicked king in Israel’s history. Notice that the disobedience of King Jehoram was passed on to the people under his authority, so that they all fell under God’s judgment. That’s because whatever influences you, you pass on to others.
This may be for someone reading this today. God is warning you: “Don’t follow that person, or that philosophy. Don’t go over that cliff!” Instead, surround yourself with godly influences, with friends who love God and encourage you in your walk with the Lord. And let the Word of God be your friend. Let God speak to you through it, so that your example will be Christ Jesus himself. Then you yourself can be an example and a model for others looking for that influence in their lives!
Read 2 Chronicles 21 for the story of King Jehoram of Judah.