Ephesians 2:8-9 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.
The enneagram 3 in me (The Achiever) always wants to perform and be validated by my works, which drives me crazy. I don’t want to be this way, but my tendency to rely on my good works has been intensely strong my entire Christian life. I often feel disappointed because I never think I do enough for God or live up to my potential. I now understand these thoughts come from a lack of relying wholly on God’s grace.
After my struggles in 2021 to find purpose and meaning in my walk with God, I have decided to focus on accepting God’s grace. Doing so will produce a complete paradigm shift in my thoughts and conversations. Most of all, it will have me feeling loved by God.
One aspect of focusing on God’s grace this year is considering what I choose to share with others. Am I giving glory to God, or do I think I was the one who made this or that happen?
To answer this question, I will first look at the definition of boast.
Boast (verb) to speak with exaggeration and excessive pride, especially about oneself. to speak with pride (often followed by of):
Now I have to admit, when I look at this definition, I immediately defend myself and say, “Oh, good, I don’t boast. I don’t speak with exaggeration and excessive pride.”
Well, let’s look at Ephesians 2:8-9. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.
This verse shuts my mouth.
- My repentance does not save me.
- My decision to be a sold-out disciple for Jesus does not save me.
- My church attendance does not save me.
- My daily quiet time does not save me.
- My weekly contribution does not save me.
I am saved by the grace of God, not by works, so that I cannot boast!!!
Now when I look at what I have or have not accomplished in life, I can see the hand of God written all over it.
- I cannot boat that I have made it to 30 years of marriage, but I can confidently say that I have a God who has loved me through my divorce and the grieving of a lost relationship.
- I cannot boast that I have beautiful grandchildren because my daughter is not married yet, but I can confidently say that God gave me the best daughter a mom could have.
- I cannot boast that I have won a single award or received a promotion at work. Still, I can confidently say that working remotely as a report developer for my California company for almost nine years now has given me financial freedom – and all credit goes to God.
Being in awe of how God dispenses his grace to me and others leaves no room for boasting. God gives me the ability to live, breathe, learn, speak, love, help, earn money, etc.
If I take pride in my strengths and hide my weaknesses, I misunderstand God’s grace. I FINALLY GET GOD’S grace if I am not ashamed of my shortcomings.
I will let grace place its hand on my boasting mouth and shut it once and for all.
However, there is only one kind of boasting God allows.
2 Corinthians 12:9 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 about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.
Father in heaven, we need your grace and power to rest on us. What about you? How has grace helped you to not boast?
This blog is the second in a series of blogs I will be writing to share my journey of growing in God’s Grace. To automatically get notifications when I post a blog, enter your name and email in the Follow Me text box.
8 thoughts on “Grace puts its hand on the boasting mouth”
Such a great article. In reality, there is no reason to boast. God has given us a purpose and a life that we can’t take any credit for. Thank you for this thoughtful post!
Thanks Jeanne. Good point that God has given us a purpose we can’t take credit for.
Thank you for illuminating how boasting is diametrically opposed to God’s grace. Every good and perfect gift comes from God, extending His grace to us. This post is much appreciated.
Thank you Carla. So true now boasting is opposite of God’s grace.
Thank you Diane! Words to live by. I believe we can boast as 2Cor. 12:9 says, we CAN boast about our weaknesses. This makes us realatable people and a light to a world that continually boast about human effort. We can also boast about our Lord and God similarly to David does in the Pslams. If we don’t boast in our Lord the stones would cry out. 😂
Amen sister. I love your take on boasting. That if we don’t boast about our Lord, the stones will cry out and do it.
Diane this is your best blog that I have read written by you! I love it and all the glory to God❤️
Thank you Diane. ♥️
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