Posted by: Jo | May 16, 2014

Boasting In The Lord

“My soul will boast in the Lord; let the afflicted hear and rejoice. Glorify the Lord with me; let us exalt his name together.” (Psalm 34:2 – 3)

image When I was young, Live Musicals were at their height of popularity and although we lived in Australia, anticipation and excitement ran high when we heard that one of these shows was to travel from America and we would be able to see on stage our favourite characters come to life. One of the shows that stands out for me was “Annie Get Your Gun” The main character, Annie Oakley, was outrageous and the music was equally loud and bombastic. One of the songs, “I can do anything better than you” was an instant favourite with my younger brother and me as it sounded quite like a lot of our conversations we had with each other. It was a boasting song. Claiming superiority over another by boasting of one’s own prowess. I was eighteen months older than my brother so I had the upper hand in the boasting until suddenly, it seemed to me, he grew taller and much stronger than me and I could no longer hang on to my superiority.

We usually associate boasting as something not to practice as it usually means promoting oneself, so I was intrigued when I came across this verse in Jeremiah that tells us in whom we should boast;

“This is what the Lord says; “Let not the wise man boast of his wisdom or the strong man boast of his strength or the rich man boast of his riches, but let him who boasts boast about this: that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight, declares the Lord.” (Jeremiah 9:23 – 24)

Paul echoed these words in his letters to believers, warning Christ’s followers never to forget who it is who brings about any sort of victory. In fact he reminds them that God doesn’t follow the worlds’ view, but is often the complete opposite;

“But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things- and the things that are not- to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him.” (1 Corinthians 1:27 – 29)

That silly song about boasting would be better sung if God’s name was substituted for “I”. When we know who can really do anything better than us we can relax knowing he is in charge. I find it a liberating thought that to do God’s will does not depend on my great wisdom. I am grateful that to share his love does not depend on my strength. I am glad that I do not have to have a lofty position in the world to image spread the good news of Jesus Christ. It is even encouraging to know if others despise my beliefs that will not deter what God would want to do through me. It does of course depend on me being very close to the Lord and to be willing to use any gifts I have to glorify him and to further his kingdom.

So let us boast to our heart’s delight in the Lord!

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Responses

  1. Good words, Jo, as always. Relates to an Alistair Begg sermon I’ve been thinking about. It was about the man with the withered hand. He couldn’t stretch out his hand… But, he did, by Jesus’ strength. It’s especially at those times we need to remember to boast about the Lord – when we do what we didn’t think we could, by the love and power of God.

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  2. Thank you Jo for reminding us that we really do have something to boast about.

    Like


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