“Let him who boasts, boast in this: that he understands and knows me.” ~ Jeremiah 9:24
A lot of boasting happens this time of year. We have all the awards shows and the football playoffs and the Australian Open. It seems like people are picking up as many accolades as they can so they can add them in front of their names. It’s not enough to be a musician – you need to be a Grammy award winning musician for people to take notice. It’s not enough to be a tennis player – you’ve got to have a ranking so you’ll get taken seriously. And for guys like Tom Brady and Roger Federer, they’ve recently come up with a new word: GOAT.
Here’s the thing about titles and awards and all that. They don’t really matter in the grand scheme of things. Oh sure – people may stop for a little bit and have a conversation about who the best singer or tennis player is, and they may be kind enough to explain what in the world a GOAT is. But then they go right back to what they were doing before.
If I’m being honest with myself, I used to care about those kinds of things an awful lot. I wanted to win Grammys and Dove Awards. I would get genuinely bummed out if a song of ours didn’t go to the top of the charts.
Now? I honestly don’t care. Don’t get me wrong. All those things are nice. It’s great to have your work recognized by your peers, and it’s great to have a song that connects with people. But none of those things are going to matter a hundred years from now.
What is going to matter? My relationship with God. He has said that eternal life is knowing him (John 17:3). That’s what we’re going to be doing for all of eternity – getting to know him better. So why not go ahead and start now? Instead of identifying yourself by what you’ve done, identify yourself by who you know.
I think that’s the heart behind Jeremiah 9:24. It’s not that awards and rankings aren’t important. They’re just not eternally important. A relationship with God is. That’s why knowing God is the only thing worth boasting or bragging about.
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