Character Flaws that are Hard to See and Hard to Change

One of my goals on my bicycle trip each year is to use the long hours of riding by myself to do a lot of reflective thinking about who I really am, and to try and recognize what needs fixing. I meditate on, and pray these two verses each morning as I start riding. King David wrote these two Psalms as personal prayers to God recognizing how hard it is to know your own heart and asking God to show him who he really was on the inside.

Psalms 139:23-24 Search me, O God, and know my heart;
Try me and know my anxious thoughts;
And see if there be any hurtful way in me,
And lead me in the everlasting way.

Psalms 26:2 Examine me, O Lord, and try me;
Test my mind and my heart.

The following verses in the gospel of Matthew are the words of Jesus to the Pharisees who crucified Him, and they are probably words that He is speaking to each of us if we could hear Him.

Matthew 23:28 So you, too, outwardly appear righteous to men, but inwardly you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.

Those are hard words that we don’t want to hear so we ignore them, and they are probably true for most of us.

It started way back in the Garden of Edan when Adam and Eve hid from God, each other, and themselves. We all project images of what we think people will be impressed with, and we do it to the point that we believe it is true, and we become blind to who we really are as we follow in Adams tracks and also hide from God, from others and from ourselves, and probably mostly from ourselves.

“Image Managers” don’t take correction well, they can’t grow much because instead of growing they pretend to grow, they tend not to have close friendships because they don’t want people to see under their mask, they don’t like accountability relationships because then they would realize how much of what they project to be true, isn’t.

“Transparency” doesn’t mean I am going to tell you all my sins, because many of my sins I am only going to unload on God. “Being real“ doesn’t mean I am going to start acting the way I feel, I am always going to try and act responsibly. Being free from pleasing people doesn’t mean I am going to stop trying to be an example and model for others to follow in order to be more Christ-like.

But I am going to work diligently not to pretend to be someone or something that I am not, and I will work hard to grow into that person for real.

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