If a man is drowning, what should you do? The correct answer is to throw him a life preserver, a rope, an oar, or any other tool that can get him above the water and to safety. The wrong answer is to jump in and try to save him. Of course, if you are an exceptionally strong swimmer, you might be able to jump in and rescue him. Anybody else jumping in would be putting their life at risk. Remember:
A drowning man will pull you down with him.
Yes, this is a simple rule one would do well to heed. But this rule goes beyond the water. When the oxygen masks drop down on the plane, you should ensure your own mask is secure before you try to secure the child’s mask next to you. It goes against our natural intuition, yet it is proven to be effective.
Are there people in your life that are drowning around you? Take a moment and consider this question. If your friends and/or family are drowning in life, do your best to help them. Maybe this is advice or a referral to an expert that can help them. Give them the tools to get above the water. But under no circumstance should you allow them to pull you down with them.
In Solomon’s first chapter in the Book of Proverbs, we are instructed to stay away from the sinners. Why? They will ask us to come along with them to do their evil deeds. They will speak of the rewards of their mischief and will want you to join them. But Solomon warns us to stay away from them. Their way ends in death.
We must constantly guard ourselves against those who will pull us down. Even if this means we should separate ourselves from them and sever our ties, we should do it. In this case, we should save ourselves first before we try to save the others.