We’ve all seen them before. The well-crafted Facebook post or the well thought out Instagram picture showcasing a great achievement, while still maintaining an envious amount of humility. You know, the kind of humility that you can be proud of. It’s an art, and we Christians are especially adept at it. We know that as Christians, we are called to live in humility; to not let our left hand know what our right hand is doing; to not practice our righteousness to be seen by others; and so on and so on. But as humans, we really, really, really need to let everyone see the perfection of our family, the consistently of our reading times, the pie we made for our neighbor, the medal(s) our child just won, our thinning waist (not hair) lines, the construction process of our new home, etc., etc.
So, what are the keys to bragging while maintaining an aura of humility? Here are some suggestions:
(1) Throw in a “to God be the glory” at the end of the post. This is a time-honored Christian tradition and instantly brings a dose of humility to nearly every brag.
At first, it almost sounded like that person was bragging about their new house. Wrong. To God be the glory.
(2) Add #blessed. To a large degree, this is a modernization of Suggestion 1. The beauty about #blessed is it doesn’t make you sound too Christiany. Therefore, #blessed may appeal to a wider audience, further showcasing your humility. This could be huge for your humility-cred.
Let’s say you just received a promotion at work, and you’ve now reached a financial milestone. You want to let as many people know as you can (i.e. brag), but you don’t want to sound like you’re bragging. That’s where #blessed comes in.
(3) Use your children as a bragging buffer. Using a picture of your child is a great way to brag while pretending like it’s all about the child. For instance, you just ran a marathon, and you need to humbly inform all of your lesser-achieving friends. So, after the race, take a picture of yourself and your child, and put the medal around your child’s neck with the caption:
Bragging about your children is an ideal way to subtly brag about yourself. Here’s another tried and true example: You’ve always instilled a love for reading in your child, and you would love for your 800-900 “friends” to see how many more books your 5 year-old child read than theirs. You know it would sound conceited to simply say, “look how successful my parenting has been,” so you should take a picture of your child reading with a strategically placed stack of books next to her. Caption it with something like:
The age part is crucial, because we all know there are many 5 year-olds who can’t read. Yours can, and people need to know! Bonus points if your child is reading the Jesus Story Book Bible.
(4) Pretend like you’re trying to motivate others. This is a brilliant tactical solution to cover up an overt brag. Here’s how this one works: you’ve just started CrossFit (and who hasn’t?), and you’re eating Paleo (it’s not a diet!). It would be an absolute tragedy not to share your new lifestyle with your closest 2100 friends. Instead of simply saying, “I look awesome, check out my amazing body,” try something like this:
Now, that makes me want to plank while eating some grilled chicken!
(5) Use a Bible verse. Now that the Bible is so accessible online, you hardly even have to try to find an appropriate verse to prop up your successes. Did your child just win Student of the Month? Try this one:
Did you just get a hot new haircut? How about this one:
Are you dying to let everyone know that you just received your Doctorate. Try this one:
I’m sure there are many other ways that we try to humbly boast.
Let us know which ones I forgot. #blessed