Taking a Different Approach in a World full of Show-Offs
As part of a recent advertising campaign, a national fitness center chain puts it out there that they purposely have fewer mirrors than most gyms. Why? They want to discourage flexing and posing during workouts so that ordinary folks feel at home in their establishment. Even if you don’t have a chiseled body, you can belong.
In other words, skip the showing off and just get to work. What a great concept.
In a world that thrives on posing and pretending, some of us could use a heads-up about the danger of peacocking. As the Bible cautions, pride always goes before a fall (Proverbs 16:18). Flexing our profile may gain the short-term applause of people, but it leads to long-term losses.
In II Kings 20:12-21, Hezekiah was caught in a moment of proud flexing. When a delegation of people from far away came to visit him, he really wanted to impress, so he took them on a tour of his palace. He showed them everything.
“…all his treasure house, the silver, the gold, the spices, the precious oil, his armory, all that was found in his storehouses. There was nothing in his house or in all his realm that Hezekiah did not show them.”
Having a moment on the world stage, Hezekiah flexed his power and wealth. Presumably the onlookers were impressed, but God definitely wasn’t. Sadly, Hezekiah’s wealth would eventually blow away like dust and his sons would become slaves.
Too bad Hezekiah didn’t get this message from Jeremiah beforehand:
But those who wish to boast should boast in this alone: that they truly know me and understand that I am the LORD who demonstrates unfailing love and who brings justice and righteousness to the earth…Jeremiah 9:24
In other words, Hezekiah should have been sure to say that everything he had came from God (I Corinthians 4:7) and that the most important thing that he had was not a thing – it was his relationship with the LORD.
The Apostle Paul flexed his spiritual muscle often, but never for his own ego’s sake. It was only to showcase the power and promise that he had in Christ. Perhaps this is his best example of flexing for Jesus:
I CAN DO ALL THINGS THROUGH CHRIST WHO STRENGTHENS ME. Philippians 4:13
It’s a new day with God. Run with it.