3.09.2005

Have you ever come face to face with how someone else perceives you and discovered that what they perceive is ugly and not something you would ever seek or claim? I have, many times I'm sure, but two times come leaping to mind. One was in college. One was last night.

I don't want to talk about last night as I am seeking to honor what others might see and think if they read this (see earlier entries). But talking about college may be helpful.

In my joking way I said something I thought was silliness to a fellow (female) student and friend, that was taken entirely differently by her boyfriend. Let's just say that, in hindsight, it was a bit flirtatious and suggestive. I honestly did not perceive what I said as that "wrong" at the time, but once I heard what her boyfriend had to say to me, let's just say that I saw things differently. I saw myself differently. And I was ashamed.

That was a profoundly humbling experience for me. It was is if I came face to face with the real me, the me that I wanted crucified with Christ (and thought had been already). I lost a certain swagger in my walk that day. I lost a bit of self-deception, too. What I don't know is if what happened last night is of the same variety. Was the ugly, proud, controlling person someone else saw in me, actually me?

I hope not. But I do knnow this. Regardless of what I hope, what this person saw in me was not wholly an illusion. There was, I am sure, some measure of truth in the perception, maybe more than I would like there to be.

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