To be ‘under the influence’ means to be controlled by something or someone other than yourself.
Who you are, what you are, and where you are today is because you were under the influence of certain people. The company you keep influences your thinking, your thinking influences your actions, your actions influence your character, and your character determines your destiny.
Influence is impossible to escape. It’s like the weather – always there to be reckoned with. That’s why it’s essential to monitor your children’s use of the internet, what they watch on television, and the company they keep because these things can influence them for good or evil. And if you’re really wise, you’ll spend time under the influence of Jesus. You’ll read His Word and spend time with Him in prayer.
Indeed, the more time you spend with Him, the more you’ll become like Him. When the disciples were filled with the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost, they were transformed to the extent that some people thought they were drunk. But Peter said: ‘These people are not drunk, as you suppose. It’s only nine in the morning! No, this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: “In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people”’ (Acts 2:15-17 NIV).
Two chapters later, we read this: ‘When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realised that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus’ (v. 13 NIVUK). And today the Holy Spirit, who is simply the influence of Christ, can transform your life too.
Luke 9:18-36, Psalms 51-53