“This is what the Lord says: ‘Let not the wise boast of their wisdom or the strong boast of their strength or the rich boast of their riches, but let the one who boasts boast about this: that they have the understanding to know me, that I am the Lord, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight,’ declares the Lord.” – Jeremiah 9:23-24
The mountaintops are dangerous terrain for one very specific reason. It can lead to misguided boasting.
We are created to celebrate. And we are created to participate. Boasting is where these two collide, the intersection of purpose and thankfulness. Although boasting gets a negative connotation, the idea in and of itself is not bad. We are made for it.
The reason boasting gets a bad rap is not because it is bad but because we do it badly. We boast of our strength, of our wealth, our achievements and our ability. We celebrate wrongly. Boasting that is not rooted in the truth looks bad. It is bad. It causes us to wrinkle our noses because it reeks of inaccuracy.
Our boasting belongs in our ability to know God. That he has made a way for us and we have reciprocated with understanding. This is not an excuse for exclusivity and arrogance. Those are different things – boasting perverted in yet another way.
The Lord wants us to celebrate. To cheer. But he wants to do it based on the truth, the accuracy of what is going on. Adopting a true perspective leads to nothing else than celebration. If we celebrate in falsity, we are fools. But to celebrate in the fullness of truth is a sign of the faithful.