perpereuomai: to boast
We’ve all met him. That little boy who has to have the last word, the better word, the BEST.
If you ran fast, he ran faster.
If you jumped high, he jumped higher.
If you had two, he had three… no, four… no, FIFTY!
Your father was six-feet tall; his was eight.
Your mom baked a pie; his mom baked a dozen.
When I first met that kid I was impressed, but that didn’t last long.
Whether or not I believed what he was saying, I felt inadequate. And that made me angry.
Often he does. And there are times that makes me feel superior.
But his words escape many mouths.
And I feel like a terrible parent when I hear him speak in my children’s voices.
Sometimes I hear his echo in my voice, see his reflection in my mirror.
How many times when people are telling me part of their story, am I just waiting for them to pause, so I can tell them about my “similar” experience?
But is that boasting?
What else would you call it if wanting to say what I want to say is more important than listening to someone…
Yup, I’m still in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a, still working my way through this tiny but HUGE passage.
So far I’ve been confronted with my need to demonstrate greater patience with my children, by learning to not raise my voice so often.
I’ve been reminded that being useful to those around me is important, and that service should never be motivated by self.
And I’ve had to admit jealousy is still a struggle, one that I must win.
Now I have to admit that I boast, I brag, when I thought this would be an easy attribute…
But it’s good, really it is. If you never feel convicted while reading Scripture, there’s something wrong…
So… love doesn’t brag (NASB) or boast (what the Greek means, according to Strong’s); it vaunteth not itself (KJV)…
Love doesn’t have to tell the world how great it is, it simply is.
Boasting wants the world to make it feel better about itself.
That little boy we’ve all met, he’s afraid. And when we think more about the next thing we’re going to say when the person talking to us stops, we’re afraid. We’re afraid we won’t be noticed. Afraid that when we are noticed we won’t be valued. Afraid that someone is better than us…
Which brings us back to ungrateful…
I see quite a theme developing here… If we want to truly love, we need to be truly grateful.
To be truly grateful, we must trust the Giver of all good gifts… the God who IS Love.
If you missed my Corinthian love challenge, I encourage you to check it out…