Reluctant boasting, those words don’t seem t go together.
However, Paul needed the believers know what his cost of following the Lord God was.
There is a saying when things are tough, the tough keep going.
It is very easy to follow the Lord God when things and life are going our way. The apostle Paul stayed true to the Lord God even when things were coming apart in his life.
Please read the following verses
16 I say again, let no one think me a fool. If otherwise, at least receive me as a fool, that I also may boast a little.
17 What I speak, I speak not according to the Lord, but as it were, foolishly, in this confidence of boasting.
18 Seeing that many boast according to the flesh, I also will boast.
19 For you put up with fools gladly, since you yourselves are wise!
20 For you put up with it if one brings you into bondage if one devours you if one takes from you if one exalts himself if one strikes you on the face. 21 To our shame, I say that we were too weak for that! But whatever anyone is bold — I speak foolishly — I am bold also.
22 Are they Hebrews? So am I. Are they Israelites? So am I. Are they the seed of Abraham? So am I.
23 Are they ministers of Christ? — I speak as a fool — I am more: in labors more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequently, in deaths often. NKJV
Many times the leaders of countries stay hidden or safe from the battles being fought. Not so for the apostle Paul.
He was front and center. This was not surprising as he had been told this would be the case.
May we adopt the saying I wrote earlier for the rest of our lives, with just one twist,
Whenever the going gets tough, the tough aided by the Holy Spirit keeps going.