As we make our walk through life, we encounter so many different people that can have an impact on you and your own life in some way. It could be with people you grew-up with, people in your church community, work colleagues, family and friends, or even strangers you have not met before. When you think about it, every person you come across can have a significant impact on the type of person you choose to be in some way. It’s like the movie “It’s A Wonderful Life.” George Bailey was given an opportunity to see a world in which he did not exist. He realized that his life was a real blessing and his own existence made an impact on so many people in his town. Life is like that for real. Everyone we encounter, whether short or long-term can have an influence on you. Some of those influences are full of love and good and some of those are, more or less evil. Those good and evil influences will help drive you in a direction that is either good or evil where the adversary always dwells.
When we face moments that we encounter people that tend to bring more toxicity to your life, it can be easy to succumb to that and fall into the trap of being that same type of person. These are people that will do whatever they can to sever any relationships you have in your own life and bring you down. We have all seen these type of people throughout our walk in life. What I want to share with you is that no matter how much someone tries to tear you down and bring you to their level, you can be stronger than them. Do not let them bring you to a point where you may do something regrettable yourself or take on their same characteristics. This is when you have to choose to let God pull you from this situation. Jesus said, “But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.” This is such a powerful thing. Even Christ, while he was being hung on the cross prayed out to the Father to forgive those who were carrying out his crucifixion. It is the most powerful showing of love and redemption ever. Confrontations may happen, but even after, love and forgive those who may do wrong to you. They may not accept, they have that choice. Leave it in God’s hands.
On the brighter side, there are those encounters and relationships with people that just bring nothing but pure love and encouragement. These are those that stand by you through difficult times or provide you the words that help to lift you up. We have all encountered these people as well. I have many them around, from my family and friends, to colleagues, mentors, and even people I may not know as well, but encounter regularly. There is one gentleman that works out at my gym and everyday he comes in with a smile and walks around shaking everyone’s hand and asking how they are doing. Have not had the chance to know him personally yet, but he is a guy that just loves life and loves meeting people. Those types of attitudes are infectious as well. Like with any situation we can choose to let these individuals have an impact on you and whether you let their kindness reflect in you.
As I said, any relationship we have in our lives has an impact on us. We have to choose how we let that relationship influence our own self. The good and the bad will have an impact on you. Mr. Potter had an influence on George Bailey just as his own wife did. The negative in life can be so easy to gravitate to. It’s always easier to fall down that path. We live in a fallen creation and the adversary is their day in and day out to pull at us in our sinful nature. You must choose to learn from those good and bad encounters in life and make strides to walk through life in a manner that is positive or negative. The positive is always harder as temptation is always there, but you can let God take control and he will help guide you through the rough patches and rough relationships.