"Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing." John 15:4,5
In middle school I decided I should be a Christian bearing "fruit". I remember consciously thinking as I walked down the hall of my school, "Smile. Keep smiling. Be friendly. Remember, you're a Christian. It should show. Be nice." There you have it- embarrassing self talk of a seventh grader.
I read the fruits of the Spirit while thinking, "I need to work on peace. Hmm... I need to work on patience. Er... with God helping me, of course." Resolve was followed by discouragement as I worked harder.
I was remembering my feeble attempts at proving myself while reading John 15. "He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing." Jesus is giving action to take but instead of "go make your list of how to be a good Christian" it is "abide in me". Abiding is not passive. It is obedience, it is following, it is holding fast to the Lord, but it is not, "go prove to everyone you're a follower of me."
Just throwing myself out there a bit...