Peer pressure. We've all been there. It's hard to deal with because if we give in, we feel awful for not standing our ground. If we don'tgive in, we end up getting teased or have to deal with continued pressure and pleading to join in. It's always an awkward position to be in. Did you know that the Bible actually says something about this? In fact, the Bible tells us to expect persecution (which, when you're a teenager, means "peer pressure"). Second Timothy 3:12 says that "everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted."

The world has been trying to pull Christians into their sin since the beginning. Sometimes friends will try to drag us into sinful practices as a means of justifying their own actions, hence the old cliché "But everyone is doing it!" As if somehow a sin is no longer a sin just because more people are doing it. Um...WRONG. Most people who will plead with you to go against your morals or even tease you for standing firm are not friends to begin with. True friends support your moral convictions—even if they do not agree with them.

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“Each week we sit under the word of God together, opening our selves not primarily to information, but to transformation.”

The Long Battle

"Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong."

"Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. Let no one say when he is tempted, 'I am being tempted by God,' for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death."

As Christians, we are to be "set apart" from a world that has no problem with sin (1 Peter 2:9-10); rather, we should avoid those things, even if it means a little bit of temporary embarrassment in front of our peers (Proverbs 13:20; 1 Corinthians 15:33). Romans 12:2 says, "Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will."

It can be difficult enough to live a Christian life without outsiders giving us grief, but unfortunately that is part of living a godly life. We just need to know how to handle those awkward—sometimes painful—situations when so-called friends tempt us with sins like underage drinking, sex, vandalism, stealing, drugs, bullying, you name it.

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