A good companion is better than a fortune, for a fortune cannot purchase those elements of character which make companionship a blessing. The best companion is one who is wiser and better than ourselves, for we are inspired by his wisdom and virtue to nobler deeds. Greater wisdom and goodness than we possess lifts us higher mentally and morally.
“A man is known by the companion he keeps.” It is always true. Companionship of a high order is powerful to develop character. Character makes character in the associations of life faster than anything else. Purity begets purity, like begets like; and this fact makes the choice of companion in early life more important even than that of teachers and guardians.
It is true that we cannot always choose all of our companions, some are thrust upon s by business or the social relations of life, we do not choose them, we do not enjoy them; and yet, we have to associate with them more or less. The experience is not altogether without compensation, if there be principle enough in us to bear the strain. Still, in the main, choice of companions can be made, and must be made. It is not best or necessary for a young person to associate with “Tom, Dick, and Harry” without forethought or purpose. Some fixed rules about the company he or she keeps must be observed. The subject should be uttermost in the thoughts, and canvassed often.
Companionship is education, good or not; it develops manhood or womanhood, high or low; it lifts soul upward or drags it downward; it ministers to virtue or vice. There is no half way work abut its influence. If it ennobles, it does grandly, if it demoralizes, it doest it devilishly. It saves or destroys lustily. Nothing in the world is surer than this. Sow virtue, and the harvest will be virtue; sow vice, and the harvest will be vice. Good companionships help us to sow virtue; evil companionships helps us to sow vice.