12 Not that we dare to classify or compare ourselves with some of those who are commending themselves. But when they measure themselves by one another and compare themselves with one another, they are without understanding.
13 But we will not boast beyond limits, but will boast only with regard to the area of influence God assigned to us, to reach even to you. 14 For we are not overextending ourselves, as though we did not reach you. For we were the first to come all the way to you with the gospel of Christ. 15 We do not boast beyond limit in the labors of others. But our hope is that as your faith increases, our area of influence among you may be greatly enlarged, 16 so that we may preach the gospel in lands beyond you, without boasting of work already done in another’s area of influence. 17 “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord
A missions leader once said, “We do not measure ourselves by what we have accomplished but by the size of the harvest yet to be reached.” The words from Paul affirm that we will have different spheres of service, different from each other and that we will work side by side but not necessarily together; we should not be concerned by this arrangement because it is the Lord’s doing. Our celebrations do not come about by comparing ourselves to other end time workers but that the sphere the Lord has given us has expanded and we have the strength and the desire to answer the call (Ps. Dale).
Thoughts for the day
- What does this passage tell us about God and people?
- What do you feel God is telling you through this passage?
- What is one way you can apply this truth to your life today?
- Who can you encourage with this story/message?
Pray and give thanks for:
…the truth of these words, “God with us”
…the impact of the birth of Jesus,
…the reality that God is with us, now.