Our world is obsessed with itself (yet “God opposes the proud,” Ja 4:6). Think of how vain we can be when we shamelessly draw attention to ourselves:
Think of how Jesus commanded his followers to pray in secret (Mt 6:5–6), fast without flaunting it (Mt 6:16–18), give in secret (Lk 21:1) and take the less prestigious seats at gatherings (Lk 14:10). Listen to how Jesus described vanity in His own words on the subject of giving to the needy and how seriously he condemns it (Mt 6:1–4):
6 “Beware of practising your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven.
2 “Thus, when you give to the needy, sound no trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be praised by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. 3 But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4 so that your giving may be in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
There is no place for vanity amongst Christ’s followers. We do not make a spectacle of self but live to give all glory to Christ. Let us not live empty lives but full lives that centre upon Him.
 It is not wrong to speak of oneself discretely, but what is our motive? That is always the most important question. We can appropriately share in natural conversation with others about our lives when we’re mutually interested in others and when what we share is in the pursuit of sharing wholesome truths (e.g. come see the birds at my feeder, I think you’ll really be interested vs. I’ve got a new feeder, come see how nice it is).
Why do people pursue vanity? For some it is sheer pride, the desire to be God. For others it comes for competition's sake. Still others do it to meet some unmet need in their life (relational affirmation). On the latter, they ought to find affirmation through knowing the love of Christ through faith in Him, which of course is what all three ultimately need.
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