Sports staff member Evan Casey led our flagpole devotion this morning and he discussed peer pressure. We are all affected by peer pressure, and we will all continue to be affected by peer pressure. Breaking the phrase down, “peer” is defined as any person we know and associate with, while “pressure” is wanting you to do something (whether good or bad), therefore “peer pressure” is friends wanting you to do something. Unfortunately, peer pressure is usually friends trying to convince you to do something bad.
Would you allow a friend to pressure you into coming to his/her house and skip worship services to do so? That friend might try to pressure you by saying, “It’s no big deal!” We often think about peer pressure only affecting youngsters, but adults are faced with peer pressure as well.
Romans 12:2 tells us how to combat peer pressure: “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God.” Instead of being “of” the world, we should be a servant of God. We are warned about being “of” the world in I Corinthians 15:33 — “Be not deceived: evil communications [companionships] corrupt good manners [morals].”
We must decide if we are going to please man, or if we are going to please God. “For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of God” (Galatians 1:10). Peter and the other apostles warn us in Acts 5:29 that “we ought to obey God rather than men.”
As we dwell on the importance of avoiding the urge to fall into the negative peer pressure of our friends, remember Joshua 24:15: “And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”