Wednesday, September 29, 2004

A Reflection of ME

It takes only a short time after one enters into any serious relationship, be that with friends, dating relationships, or spouses that a reflection of one’s self begins to surface.
This statement is not profound by any stretch of the imagination. In fact, I have had the sentiment expressed to me numerous times and I know I have read it stated in some form in at least half a dozen books. (there's more)
Because of this familiarity, it seems idiotic to be surprised when I realize I am clearly seeing the worst of myself in a relationship with another person – most commonly my wife. Nevertheless, like an epiphany at an AA meeting, I say, “ Hi, my name is Todd and I have a problem with _________!” I usually declare this (to myself because I would never admit it out loud) only after I have yelled, rebelled, cussed, and screamed at the other person for showing me … ME!
I never cease to be amazed by my own stupidity most of the time, but I am glad that laughter and a caring person on the other end of the relationship doesn’t hold the same judgments against me that I hold against myself. The most frustrating part of this relationship process (if that’s what you call it) is, I inevitably feel like a hamster in a running mill because I keep making the same mistakes and having the same epiphanies.

2 comments:

geoff said...

thanks TP. hopefully we don't make the very same mistakes too many times over. the gift of a kind of objectivity should be as transforming as it is confronting...perhaps this is the difference between just being shown who you are (which can just be defeating after a while) and coming into a set of interdependent relationships that allow us to strive more faithfully to be fully alive humans in the Jesus-way of humanity.

billy said...

Todd,
I think you've put your finger on the toughest challenge that any person faces when he or she decides to embrace tha daunting challenge of being intimately known by another. And you've done with an honesty and sensitivity that is really inspiring for me. It takes a lot of courage to look into the mirror and behold the reflection cast back to you by other people, especially the people who are nearest and dearest to your heart. But even more than a simple act of courage, it takes character to fully digest the feedback, make the necessary changes, and begin moving toward others in a healing way. I think that your making those moves in a very deliberate way, and I'm emboldened by your journey. God is clearly working powerfully in your life, and that work is helping me to grow! So, thanks-
Shalom