Juveniles and even some adults today do a lot of vile things throughout their lives. Peer pressure is the cause of most of these infractions. Because of this, parents and other grown-ups start to view peer pressure as a detriment to their teenagers. Although some peer pressure can lead to destructive ways, there is also positive peer pressure.
Picture this: a bunch of teenagers get together, not knowing what they should do on a Friday night. Then one of the teenagers decides all of them should go to a party one of their classmates is having while his parents are out of town. The college kids came swarming to the party, which makes it a sure thing that there will be alcohol there and much of it. Everyone else says that it is a good idea except for one person. He tells them that they should do something else, because he knows that going to this party is not the right thing to do. In the end, he tags along because he does not want to be seen as the “loser” of the group.
This story is an example of bad peer pressure. No one wants to be considered a “loser,” so he does what everyone else is doing. Teenagers are being pushed into using drugs, smoking, drinking, and stealing; their friends are doing it, and they do not want to be left out. When they get caught by their parents, the common phrase that comes out of their mouth is, “everyone else is doing it, so why can’t I?” This phrase gives parents the idea that their friends are being a bad influence on them and that they should not be hanging out with them.
Peer pressure is not always bad; it can also be used to benefit young people. Picture the same story as before only this time one person wants to go to the party while the others think that it is wrong, and that they should not go. Now peer pressure is forcing the individual not to go to the party because he does not want to lose his group of friends. Now he does not have to worry about getting caught by his parents; when he does go home he can tell his parents the truth and not lie about where he was. Peer pressure saved him from a lot of sin that he could have committed but did not, all thanks to his friends.
Peer pressure must not be the only source to get one to do things pleasing to God. The fact that God commands us to do good should be enough for us to realize sinning is not what we should be doing. This means that going to parties, doing drugs, and other things are not the right path for us to be taking. Even though our friends think it is cool to party, we should remember that God commands us to do otherwise even if it means losing some close friends.
Peer pressure must be looked at from both sides, and we should not just look at the negative aspect of it. Without positive peer pressure, many teenagers could be living a totally different lifestyle.