When you believe that we are just spiritual beings (see my previous thesis item) then our personality, will and behavior are fluid. After all it is just a spirit which can turn on a dime. Therefore, all that we are (according to them) is based on our soul being created by God, our obedience or lack of and then possibly supernatural influence by the Holy Spirit or a demon.
But, in a monistic way of looking at ourselves, we have a very important physical part to who we are . . . precisely our brains. While the spiritual soul can turn on a dime, the physical brain can not. Basically, we carry the same general personalities and traits, once we reach grade school, for the rest of our lives.
Evangelicals believe that at the moment that we become Christians, we are suddenly changed. We have no lingering sin but can decide each day if we are going to be "spirit filled," which means really means being perfect.
If you value the role of our brains, change comes very, very slowly and with a great deal of effort. Sin has tainted our personalities and that tainting does not go away by jumping through "Christian education" hoops (or discipleship).
In my opinion, most of what evangelicals see as Christian maturity is socialization. As a new Christian you first learn to stop saying Christian-socially unaccepted words (damn, hell, shit, etc.). You learn to start smiling more, especially when you are around other Christians. You learn clichés, ways of talking, and it earns a lot of socialization points to speak a lot of "God stuff" or miracles. You can see your Christian friend's eyes light up, smiles come on their faces as a type of positive feedback.
In the meanwhile, our true natures are basically the same. We ALL are deeply insecure and are desperate to feel like we have value and to be loved. We would almost (and some do) kill to meet this primal goal.
Of course Jesus has solved that problem (having value) but none of us fully grasp it during our lifetimes.
So, when in reality, you are broken and want to desperately to be important, but on the surface, as an Evangelical, you think that you have "grown" past all of that . . . you have one choice, fake it.
I believe that Evangelicals create layers upon layers of facade to cover their real motives and to look more '"godly." That's what I mean by Evangelicals living up on the 30th floor, pastors up the the 50th and TV evangelists up on the 80th floor, just beneath the schizophrenics (who are totally out of touch with reality). It is what Jesus was referring to when he called the Pharisees white washed walls (simple surface facade over raw ugliness).
I'm sorry but I'm back. I started working on this, then accidentally published it rather than save it. Then I got busy. I cleaned up a few typos. I realize that I was about done anyway.
So, that is why it is very hard to have a real conversation with evangelicals. That's why I felt like I could not talk to my church board (they function up on the 30-40th floor). That's why the pastor screaming had me, made me mad as hell, but even though he was screaming with a contorted face . . . according to him he wasn't angry but only carrying our pastorally duties to confront sin (down on the 1st floor he really pissed because I left his church upon whose success his self-esteem is based.)
The worse part of is, just like in normal society, within the Christian fold there are plenty of people with psychological baggage. This can be from (possible genetic + plus early childhood trauma) people with personality disorders. I wrote extensively about this a couple of years ago. So people with narcissistic personalities often find themselves in positions of leadership. They are very skilled (because they are often very intelligent and articulate) in manipulating people with Christian guilt. Guilt is the cattle prod of dysfunctional church life.
Then you can have people with borderline personality disorders. They can wreck havoc in church life, and always come out as the saint (but they are desperate to make people love them and if they don't love them, they will make sure they have hell to pay . . . but do it in such a crafty way that no one notices that is is not of God.
I think I will end my thesis.