The Weekly Word: Be a boaster
By Coulter Page, Pastor, Bethany Alliance Church
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
— 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 ESV
The Olympics are here! Have you been keeping up on them? What is your favorite sport to watch?
I personally watch as much as I can, but my favorite thing to watch is the gymnastics. An interesting thing happened the evening before writing this devotional — Simone Biles removed herself from participating on the USA girls gymnastics team. Many were shocked, but we came to find out that it was because she was struggling with her health.
As I reflect upon all that transpired, I was drawn back to these two verses which I am preaching on this weekend at Bethany Alliance Church.
Athletes such as Simone Biles, Katie Ledecky and Carissa Moore are all star athletes within their perspective sports. They all have so much skill, talent and ability. They all have a lot they could boast about.
But Paul, who wrote 2 Corinthians, takes a different approach as he talks about what he would boast about.
He says he won’t boast on all the great things he can do, even though he has a lot he could have boasted in (see 2 Corinthians 11:16-12:6), but instead he will boast in his weaknesses. Essentially, he says, if he were in Simone Biles’ shoes, he would boast in his unhealth.
That seems very odd. That is not natural. But the reason he can boast in this is because he believes the statement Jesus spoke to him in 2 Corinthians 12:9, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”
Paul knew that the reason he was put on this Earth was to reflect Christ. He knew his reason for existence was to point people to Jesus. When he was weak, whether physically, mentally or emotionally, he knew that Jesus would show up and show off.
He knew that not only surviving through the weakness but thriving in it would show off Jesus to a world that is watching. That is why he was able to say, “I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” (2 Corinthians 12:9)
My heart goes out to Simone Biles. I pray she can find healing in Christ. I also pray for all of us. I pray that we realize that the greatest thing we can ever do is reflect Christ. I pray that we understand that his power is made perfect within our weaknesses. I pray that we can have Paul’s attitude that boasts in our weaknesses, so Jesus gets the glory.
Father God. Boasting in my weaknesses is not something I naturally do. But I long to have the heart that reflects that is all about reflecting Jesus. Would you help me to see my weaknesses as a way to display your glory? Would you work through me to reflect you. Amen.