maybe the problem is me

this isn't a position i take very often. ok, this isn't a position i've ever taken in my life. maybe the problem is me.

i've made every excuse - the timing is bad, she's embarassing in public, she's not smart enough, she's not driven enough, she's not attractive, she's not spiritual enough, she's boring ... i've said them all to justify escaping a relationship.

but i've never said, "it's not you, it's me."

today, i got an e-mail, and it wasn't me, she said, it was her. i am great, she tells me; i'm "absolutely hilarious, intelligent, sweet beyond imagination, and everything any girl could ever ask for." (i added that for all of you who didn't know that i had the potential to be charming - loveable, even ) but then she tells me that it can't happen, for this reason or that. i talked to her on the phone, and it became quite clear: she just doesn't like me.

now, ordinarily, i'd dismiss it as "her loss" and move on with my ego perfectly intact (that's for you, lee). but, as the failed short-term shallow relationships pile up behind me and my future looms before me, i sit here terrified. i'm terrified of being alone, of being vulnerable, and of accomplishing anything. the problem, i've decided, is me.

i'm selfish, probably. actually, i can go slightly beyond probably with that. i'm pretty sure that i'm selfish in my dealings. my reputation is not anything worth repeating, and i'm to the point that i really don't want to be me anymore.

can a person's name be salvaged? ultimately, its not what people think of me, but how God views me, but let's face it - i'm not exactly a shining example of chivalry and level-headed, rational behaviour. so something's gotta give. i can't keep going the way i'm going (and, yes, this is me rewording advice i've received, so anita, you don't have to call me on it), because my own foolish behaviour will "give offence" and tarnish the ministry.

i wonder how many people my actions have turned from the truth. has my witness tarnished the cross? can i be justified? i know i don't deserve it, but can it be done?

i'm tired of it all. i want something more.