“I’m president of my firm, of course. The only way I could get away was to have my partner service my million-dollar-plus clients. I just hope he doesn’t mess things up ….”
I’ve never heard anybody say these exact words, but we’ve all heard similar remarks, especially at family or class reunions.
Boasting is never attractive. I get so embarrassed when I hear myself bragging that I immediately try to redeem myself by saying something humble: “I have the whitest teeth in the family!” (Pause.) “But, then again my teeth are so big, maybe they just look whiter.”
Seriously though, it’s no fun being around an arrogant person. I don’t even like being around myself when I hear myself bragging. It’s so unbecoming.
Furthermore, what does our bragging say about us? When we feel the need to prove our worth and esteem ourselves above others, we not only display our lack of love and respect for others, we reveal a lack of love and respect for ourselves.
This week, as we tackle 1 Corinthians 13:4’s final challenge: “Love does not … boast; it is not arrogant,” perhaps we can minimize our temptation to brag by accepting God’s love for us. What if we felt so secure in Him that we didn’t have to reach for validation from others – or ourselves? And if we practice loving others with God’s love, then perhaps they won’t feel the need to boast either.
When we’re boastful and arrogant, we become so self-focused we can’t see and recognize the accomplishments of those around us. Or we see others’ accomplishments as threats to our “importance.” Both are detrimental to our relationships and our spiritual growth. Choosing to applaud another’s success rather than tooting our own horns is yet another way we can display genuine, godly love.
As we wrap up our discussion on 1 Corinthians 13:4 (ESV), let’s look at this verse in its entirety once again:
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant.
With which characteristic did you struggle the most today? Patience? Kindness? Jealousy? Bragging?
Would you consider going to your heavenly Father, acknowledging your weakness, and asking for grace to do better? This is precisely what I plan to do.
What about you?
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- What have you discovered about yourself during our discussion of 1 Corinthians 13:4?
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