Why do we brag? And what do we brag about?
Bragging or boasting is often done on the basis of mere association. That is, we have some peripheral connection with something that others admire, so we brag about it. "My team won! [therefore, I am great, too!]" Um, what, exactly, did you have to do with that performance? You assisted in that win and deserve credit how? You supported the team by watching them on TV and drinking beer? Or maybe you even bought a ticket? Wow, that is so amazing. Why, you practically won that game all by yourself.
"I drive a Mercedes! [therefore, I am impressive, just like M Benz!]" Um, the fact that you could buy or lease a Mercedes makes you impressive how? Shows that you have money? What year is it? "Um, 1992. But I paid only $1700 for it! I got a super deal. So, I can brag about being shrewd!" Yeah, but save your money for that $4500 transmission repair coming up. Marketers say that the car you drive is a personal statement about who you are, an extension of your personality. I don't know. What if your lips say Lamborghini, but your wallet says Ford Fiesta?
"Well, my kid got kid of the month at school." And that reflects on your wonderfulness how? That you are a great parent somehow responsible for your kid's performance? Now, if you brag on behalf of your child rather than yourself, then you are on firmer ground.
"Well, the fact is, I'm [choose one: smart, rich, good looking, famous, influential]." This brings us to today's word of wisdom: "What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did receive it, why do you boast as if you had not received it?" --1 Corinthians 4:7b
All of our talents, abilities, and personal attributes are a gift from God, so boasting about them is ridiculous. "I'm so great because I'm cute," doesn't cut the mustard of logic. You might boast about your parents' DNA that let you be cute, but that's a gift from the Lord via your parents.
Do we have so little genuine, humble self-esteem that we have to turn to loose associations with people and things that our short-attention-span peers find remarkable?
Let's see, what can I brag about? I once met a guy who knew the third cousin of a woman who shook hands with a guy who owned a store where a man shopped who had his hair cut by a barber who heard that the friend of a friend of a customer knew someone who once met Elvis Presley. I am soooo stoked!!! Me and
Elvis! We're just like this!
Do you admire me now?