God wants us to express ourselves, our faith, the things He has done and the ways by which He led us in life. In fact, He makes time so that we are able to express them in our life. Often believers confuse it with unwanted boasting or superfluous talk. And because of it, some refrain from fulfilling God’s desire while others ridicule or obstruct others from doing so. Throughout the Bible we see God’s children express their experience with Him; especially we see the psalmist wishing for God’s people to do it. God allows boasting that brings Him glory. He prepares us for it. Because He called us and gave us a purpose, He allots us a measure to which we ought to stand faithful and serve Him. Whatever things He has performed toward us for that purpose, He expects us to convey them with all boldness. Paul said, “But we will not boast beyond our measure, but within the measure of the sphere which God apportioned to us as a measure, to reach even as far as you” (2 Cor. 10:13).
The effect of such boasting is guarded by the Spirit and its truth is established by the same. The result is the revealing of God’s knowledge to men and the transformation of hearts in those who believe. God fancies us to boast in His timing. He leads us for it by the Spirit He made to indwell us. Paul boasted, because the Spirit of God in him invoked his inner man for it. Hence, he later on said that all who boast must boast in the Lord. When we boast in the Lord we do not speak beyond realities, our ability and wisdom, but as the Lord has done for us and desired from us; we neither speak condemningly nor pointlessly. Whatever purpose God has given us and supplied for it, it is His measure of sphere to us. You could just be a parent and He uses you to let others understand the intricacies of true parenting. The beauty of such boasting lies in God apportioning to us a measure. Because, once He does it, He avails all things for it; He does not miss a thing. For this reason, one has to be in Christ. Or else, one may be a parent and yet, is without the heavenly substance for parenting.
God wants us to reach out to others. Yet, He does not want us to improvise to express Him and His works. When we stick to the measure given to us the result is God bound. Paul said, “and I pray that the fellowship of your faith may become effective through the knowledge of every good thing which is in you for Christ’s sake” (Phile. 1:6). Firstly, God establishes many good things in us for the measure He apportioned to us along with the knowledge of those things. As we do them, He adds His works and power to them and they display our faith effectively. And when we boast of them, it is working toward fulfilling His purpose in us. It is a process He begins in us at the time of salvation. In time He makes us a people full of His wisdom, truth and glory. We can categorically speak of many things pertaining to Him and His nature; not only speak, but be convinced of them for the rest of our days. Thus, no man hearing and believing will turn back to question the might of God. As each individual’s faith with a measure associates with another, it becomes effective through all the good things God gave.
When we are with God’s apportioned measure, we do not need to improvise as some do; we would not even have the mind to do so. For we continue in the plans and thoughts of God. Our entire being conforms to Him. And of those who improvise it is not for us to fret, because we know how God works in the faithful. And the Word also says, “but they will give account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead” (1 Pet. 4:5). Through us God makes a difference. Those who improvise are no lesser than the gentiles that are surprised at our way of life. In fact, God allows them to improvise so that through those whom He gave a measure He brings out truth and justice. They improvise knowing they have to and being confronted by their own words and works. We boast knowing God establishes all things. The Bible points to certain principles, if we are to boast in God’s measure.
- Will of God. We ought to have God’s will/purpose. God has to choose us, though a deed may appear as familiar occurrence among men. The reason He must choose is to provide the higher and holier ways to bring out the perfect purpose of that work. There are many preachers and yet, not all are called just as there are many Christians that are so-called ones. In Col. 1:1 we see the apostle making an assertion that is necessary as well as significant. He said, “Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God…” (Col. 1:1). It implies there can be an apostle that is not of Christ and not by the will of God. Yet, in his case that which proved him as an apostle of Christ by God’s will is the measure God apportioned to him with the provisions to establish it. If we have God’s will, there will also be His measure and the things to establish it.
- Christ’s Supervision. We ought to be under His supervision. In other words, we are not allowed to simulate, lie or improvise. Furthermore, we boast only as much as needed for the moment. Hence, Paul was able to boldly boast and yet not as if glorying himself. For He said, “For the love of Christ controls us…” (2 Cor. 5:14). Our spirit is controlled by the Spirit of Christ so that we do not bring Him dishonor. We are led to boast in love so that our speech cannot be nullified.
- Accept our human nature. When Paul was in Damascus, there was a plot by the Jews to kill him, “but his disciples took him by night and let him down through an opening in the wall, lowering him in a large basket” (Acts 9:25). In a letter to the Corinthians he called it a weakness and preferred to boast of it. It is when we accept and realize there will be times of weakness and fear that God gives us the boldness to boast. God strengthens us for it so that our conveying of it may bring courage to many. When they believe, God makes them strong.
- Christ’s work. “And Simeon blessed them and said to Mary His mother, ‘Behold, this Child is appointed for the fall and rise of many in Israel, and for a sign to be opposed’” (Luke 2:34). As those with God’s will, we boast, since Jesus has been appointed by God to rise us. In other words, everything we boast about has taken place in the will of God. Those who oppose us will fall, for they do not have the heart to believe and the rest will rise to continue in our manner. Christ continually works in us so that we boast in Him and in His timing.