If you ever plan to visit Romania, you might come across an interesting custom: Humble Boasting followed by ANGRY COMPLAINING. You know you get together with your friends and everything is wonderful their lives are great, jobs are going well, kids are excelling in school, followed by a quick turn around to everything is bad, family – bad, economy – bad, job and kids – bad. You get the idea. I find it always interesting and fun to watch in part because it reminds me of our humanity.
As people, we have a certain streak in us that wants to prove to the world that we are better than everyone else, and yet we are still rooted to a reality that sometimes tends to knock us off.
For Apostle Paul, that struggle has a different twist. All his accomplishments and also failure is seen in the context of who God is, of Gods grace. As I was reading Paul’s letter and the way he defends his character and ministry, I was amazed at all the things Paul describes from his failures and troubles in the provinces of Asia, to scraped plans to Macedonia and letting people down as a result of that. There is something about Paul that makes you like him: He is real, nothing to hide, no need to boast or trying to impress, there is something about him that it just is.
And that is attractive. That “something special” of Paul comes from learning about Grace, living in Grace giving and receiving grace day after day. If there is anything we might need today it might have to do with grace, living in a way that is real, even if we let people down, disappoint or even upset.
Today I pray that we can learn from Paul, that we can be real no pretenses and walk in grace towards one another.