“If I must boast, I will boast of the things that show my weakness.” – 2 Corinthians 11:30 (NIV, ESV)
Being proud and confident is an admirable trait. Developing and strengthening the talents God has given you is a good thing to pursue. Doing this brings Him glory. But you can also glorify God by understanding and embracing your weaknesses. It is through your weakness that God displays His power.
“If I must need glory, I will glory of the things which concern mine infirmities.” (King James Bible)
“If I must boast, I will boast about the things that show how weak I am.” (International Standard Version)
“If it is fitting to boast, I shall boast in my sufferings.” (Aramaic Bible in plain English)
Meaning of the verse
God’s strength is made perfect in weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9). The apostle Paul acknowledged that he wasn’t the most skilled, smartest or talented. He felt he did not have the strength to do all that was needed for the kingdom of God. However, in spite of this, Paul understands that God can take even the weaknesses we have and use them as strengths for His glory.
We should not boast about our talents. But neither should we feel diminished by our weaknesses – we should recognize them. God has given us gifts, whether weak or strong, that he can use to further his kingdom.
Jesus Christ – God in the flash – humbled himself completely, sacrificing his life, shedding his blood on the cross to pay the price to purchase salvation from sin for all of mankind.
We should offer ourselves to God – humbly and as we are – and pray for Him to use us to help do His will.
If we must boast, let us boast about our inefficiencies, and let others know the magnificence of God, and His ability to turn weaknesses into power to serve Him – while giving God all the Glory for all that is achieved.
2 Corinthians 12:5
I will boast about a man like that, but I will not boast about myself, except about my weaknesses.
2 Corinthians 12:9
But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is perfected in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly in my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest on me.
It is not good to eat much honey: so for men to search their own glory is not glory.
1 Corinthians 2:3
I came to you in weakness and fear, and with much trembling.