Biblical Tips On Relationships:
Bragging Damages Relationships
Bragging puts a barrier between others and us. If they believe us, it sets us up as better then them. If they see the bragging as a desperate attempt to feel important, they see us as pitiful.
Revelations 3:17 The Message
You brag, 'I'm rich, I've got it made, I need nothing from anyone,' oblivious that in fact you're a pitiful, blind beggar, threadbare and homeless.
There is only one thing worth bragging about; our relationship with God.
There is one exception to the “no bragging” rule. We are allowed to brag about our relationship with God. We brag that God is God and we know it. If our bragging points to God, it is allowed. By bragging about God, we actually began bragging about our own weaknesses in relationship to him. Admitting our failures builds a bridge between us and other people.
Jeremiah 9:23-24 The Message
GOD's Message: "Don't let the wise brag of their wisdom. Don't let heroes brag of their exploits. Don't let the rich brag of their riches. If you brag, brag of this and this only: That you understand and know me. I'm GOD, and I act in loyal love. I do what's right and set things right and fair, and delight in those who do the same things. These are my trademarks." GOD's Decree
Bragging about anything other than God is the opposite of humility.
Our strength is nothing to brag about. God’s strength comes through our weakness, not our strength. Stop bragging about anything involving your own human strength or success. It is pitiful. It will damage your relationships. Instead, confess your weaknesses.
2 Corinthians 12:9 The Message
My grace is enough; it's all you need. My strength comes into its own in your weakness.
This example comes straight from the Bible. Paul’s spiritual gift is clearly “prophesy.” Prophets are born loving to talk and needing to be heard. Before his conversion, Paul had plenty to brag about. He was important and wealthy. No doubt – he let people know. The Christians were understandably terrified of him.
Along with Paul’s conversion came a measure of humility but Christians continued to fear him. In order to be effective for Christ, Paul had to build a bridge between him and others. Paul himself admitted that humility continued to be difficult for him. In 2 Corinthians 12:6-9, he confessed that he could probably still brag without looking ridiculous. After all, Paul was gifted. He had carried his natural gifts into his Christian work and was experiencing a measure of success. Knowing Paul struggled with a lack of humility, God sent him an affliction to keep him humble. Paul used God’s “gift” to him to make himself more human to those around him.
2 Corinthians 12:6-9
If I had a mind to brag a little, I could probably do it without looking ridiculous, and I'd still be speaking plain truth all the way. But I'll spare you. I don't want anyone imagining me as anything other than the fool you'd encounter if you saw me on the street or heard me talk. Because of the extravagance of those revelations, and so I wouldn't get a big head, I was given the gift of a handicap to keep me in constant touch with my limitations. Satan's angel did his best to get me down; what he in fact did was push me to my knees. No danger then of walking around high and mighty! At first I didn't think of it as a gift, and begged God to remove it. Three times I did that, and then he told me, “My grace is enough; it's all you need. My strength comes into its own in your weakness.”
In 1 Corinthians 11:30-33, Paul modeled the words in Jeremiah 9:23-24. “If I have to brag, I’ll brag about the humiliations that make me like Jesus.” Bragging about his weaknesses endeared him to his fellow Christians. It endears us to him today.
2 Corinthians 11:30-33
If I have to "brag" about myself, I'll brag about the humiliations that make me like Jesus. The eternal and blessed God and Father of our Master Jesus knows I'm not lying. Remember the time I was in Damascus and the governor of King Aretas posted guards at the city gates to arrest me? I crawled through a window in the wall, was let down in a basket, and had to run for my life.