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My friends are making me doubt my faith. How can I get confidence to make new friends?
Thank you for sharing such a personal situation. I am so sorry to hear that this situation is causing you problems. I am presuming that you are a follower of Jesus Christ to say that you have belief.
If you are a follower of Jesus it may comfort you, and help you to understand the situation, that Jesus said things like this will happen to his followers:
"Blessed are you who weep now, for you shall laugh.
"Blessed are you when people hate you and when they exclude you and revile you and spurn your name as evil, on account of the Son of Man! Rejoice in that day, and leap for joy, for behold, your reward is great in heaven; for so their fathers did to the prophets" (Luke 6:21-23)
Jesus talks of a day when his followers will have no more pain or suffering. But until then, this may be something we need strength to endure, rather than something we run away from.
This is how Peter calls the Church to defend themselves:
Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing. For
"Whoever desires to love life
and see good days,
let him keep his tongue from evil
and his lips from speaking deceit;
let him turn away from evil and do good;
let him seek peace and pursue it.
For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous,
and his ears are open to their prayer.
But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil."
Now who is there to harm you if you are zealous for what is good? But even if you should suffer for righteousness' sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled, but in your hearts honour Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defence to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect, having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behaviour in Christ may be put to shame. For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God's will, than for doing evil. For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit (1 Peter 3:9-18).
It is saying this:
- Have no fear.
- Be prepared to defend what you believe.
- Do it gently and with respect.
This is a very tough thing to do. I experienced a very similar situation when I was in school. My girlfriend called me a 'bible basher' then left me for another person, and a lot of my friends laughed and joked about my faith and challenged it. I did not always defend it, and sometimes when I did defend it, I was not gentle. I also decided to stop playing a sport because of the drinking culture that I was being sucked into. Sometimes we need wisdom to know what to do. There is no one size fits all answer to this question.
God did however teach me many things during those times.
On the other side, before I was a Christian I actually used to bully another boy called John. He took the courage to defend what he believed and over the years he told me about Jesus and invited me to Church where I heard the good news and started following Jesus for myself! I thank God that John did that!
I would like to encourage you towards the following:
- Is there a church group nearby where you can make new friends?
- Is there a Christian union in your place of work/study?
- Are you able to tell someone older and in authority (parents or teachers) about how you feel and ask them for help in resolving the situation?
- Are you able to talk directly to your friends and tell them how they are making you feel?
- I think it is up to your own conscience if you should stop hanging out with these people or not. I do not want to tell you either way. If it is really upsetting you then perhaps you should distance yourself from them for a time, until you feel stronger.
- If you want confidence I encourage you to read Joshua 1 and pray that God will give you confidence.
Just as I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you or forsake you. Be strong and courageous (Joshua 1:5-6)
Our self belief can only be made stronger because of the one we believe in.
If you are a child of God, then you have great reason to be confident. Try and look at the bigger picture. One day, if your trust is in Christ, you will have billions of new friends in heaven, and until then you can hopefully find new friends in the local Church and others to support you on this journey.
I hope this answer helps you to find peace with God through Jesus Christ. If you want to know more about what Jesus has done for you please watch the video on the main part of our site: Watch the video
I encourage you to attend a local Bible believing church and speak to the leader about your question. If you want to find a local church, our Church Finder may help you: Find a Church
Please feel free to submit a question to us or to read our answer database: Ask a Question
*All Scripture references are taken From The English Standard Version of the Holy Bible unless stated otherwise
*If anything in this answer affects you directly, then please feel free to call our confidential prayer line in the UK on 0845 4567729, where trained Christian volunteers will take your call and pray both for you and with you. If you are outside of the UK then you may submit your request for prayer on line at www.ucb.co.uk/prayerline
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