Friends: By choice or by circumstance?

In my friend’s restroom hangs a framed inspirational quote.

“Friends are the family you choose for yourself.”

A fantastic idea, but I’d like to add one word to it: can.

“Friends are the family you can choose for yourself.”

The possibility to choose our friends is there, but how often do we actually do it? Think about your own close circle of friends. How many of them did you choose? How many stumbled into your life through circumstances like work, school, or church?

The sad truth is, while we have the option of choosing our friends, more often than not our friendships are determined by circumstances just as our relatives are determined by circumstances.

Is this bad? Considering our friends influence who we are more than anything else in the history of the world, yes, I’d say it’s bad. It’s bad because allowing circumstances to determine our friends is allowing circumstances to determine who we are. Not too responsible a life if you ask me.

My mom always taught me to choose my friends wisely, but how can I choose wisely if I’m not choosing at all?

So here’s a bumper sticker to go with:

“Choose for yourselves this day whom you will friend.”