Who Are You Really?
|The hardest person to be honest with is yourself . . .|
Billy Graham frequently said that if he was given ten minutes with a man's checkbook, we could tell where his heart was. What people say means very little. That's not new, even Benjamin Franklin knew that when he said, "Well done is better than well said." If you want an accurate gauge of what a person is about, watch what they do, not what they say. Your heart is where you spend your energy, your thoughts, and your treasure.
We live in a world of virtue signalling. We always have, but these days, it's just a lot more obvious because it's easier to check facts. I'm not reminding you of this so that you can point at other people. I'm reminding you of this so you can look in the mirror and see it in yourself.
Do your actions match your beliefs? Do the things you say match with the things you do? Do the causes you support and the organizations you belong to share the values you claim to have? Do you let outside influences convince you to support things you know are fundamentally wrong? Are the things you spend your time and treasure on fall in line with the things you claim to support?
Too often when we really look honestly at ourselves, we find there are some inconsistencies in our life. It may be because we're trying to be something we're not. What we're showing on the outside doesn't match what we really believe on the inside. The question is, are the conflicts because you're hiding who you really are because you're ashamed of who you are, or are you proud of who you are, but project something else to fit into an environment that doesn't share your values? Either way, what we should do is to work very hard on ourselves, so that what we actually are matches what we claim to be. That we either work on those weakness and flaws we're hiding, or work on being more honest with those around us in who we actually are. In a perfect world, we should always be working on both--what's inside us, and what we do with that in the world outside.
Building character is hard. It requires change. It requires us to be absolutely honest with ourselves, and that's hard, because we lie to ourselves more than we lie to anyone else. Virtue signalling is not a character trait--conviction is. Anyone can pretend to be something they aren't, but character is foundational. It's who you really are. People of character are consistent in the things they say, the things they do, and the things they support. People of character not only talk the talk, but they walk the walk. And people of character continue to work on themselves throughout their entire life because they are always striving for a better version of themselves.
~Todd E. Creason