"The faithless will be fully repaid for their ways, and the good man rewarded for his... A wise man fears the Lord and shuns evil, but a fool is hotheaded and reckless." Proverbs 14: 14 & 16
I'm no economic expert, but one basic idea that I'm familiar with is the idea of Risk and Reward. When making an investment, you have to consider the risks and the rewards to determine if the investment is worth making. Generally, an investment that is high risk can have huge rewards (or opportunity for making lots of money), and low risk investments usually don't pay off as well. A savings account is a good example of a low risk-low reward investment. Since there's very little chance that you'll lose your money, the pay off (or "interest") on savings accounts is usually tiny- a fraction of a percentage. Whereas, a savvy investor might be able to make lots of money by knowing a lot about stocks and economic trends, so that he/she can "play the market" and make lots of money by making wise investments.
At school and in life, the way we conduct ourselves works in much the same way. Making fun of others and being cruel are easy ways to earn the approval of many of our peers at school. You might have faced opportunities to do something "cool" in order to earn the respect of your peers. Many times, this can involve making decisions that you wouldn't be proud of in the company of your parents, or church friends. Giving in to this type of peer pressure is not very risky, but the reward is minimal- being "cool" and earning a little respect for a short time. However, doing something that is right, might not be seen as "cool" and is therefore risky to your reputation. But just like in the economic system, your risk could earn you a new friend, and possibly change that person's life.
Are you willing to do the unpopular thing by standing up for what is right?
Do you think that your friends will stop liking you if you become a Christian example?
If so, are those friends really your friends?