Vehicles, Not Actors
The Christian life is too often a show. Whether our motivation is to be a good ambassador of Christ or to earn our salvation, we often put on a mask of goodness. No one is fooled. We are backbiters, gossipers, and coveters.
But it just feels so natural. We want to be seen as good people, worthy of respect and honor. We want a good reputation. That's all fine and good, but when we fake-it-till-we-make-it we never actually make it.
We change when we want to change, and we want to change when our motivations change. Our motivations change when our hearts direct their orientation outside of self-aggrandizement toward the eternal - that is, toward God. Looking inward we see an unclear picture. It is very hard to be truly introspective and it's not that interesting. This is what makes teenagers so unstable. They are preoccupied with what everyone thinks of them so they look at themselves endlessly to make sure they're putting out the right image. It's a cycle of insanity.
A better way forward is to consider yourself a vehicle, not an actor. If you are a follower of Jesus, his Spirit lives inside you. Thus you are a vessel of God, a vehicle.
Vehicles are driven by others. They sit still unless acted upon. That's who we truly are - and who we should strive to be. If we will submit to God and ask that his will be done through us, we will find this humble posture creates movement. It is through submission that we become who we are truly made to be. God continues his brushstrokes on our souls.
We aren't fooling anyone, so we might as well stop trying to act like we've got it all together. We don't, and that's okay.
Psalm 27:8 puts a bow on this:
You have said, "Seek my face." My heart says to you, "Your face, Lord, do I seek."