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Posts Tagged ‘Apology’

I messed up.  Big time.  In a moment of selfishness, I hurt someone I love.  And I felt terrible.

My husband was trying to do something nice for me, something really nice.  Rather than graciously accepting his offering, I questioned.  Instead of being swept up in the moment, I fled for my rut.  Instead of thanking him, I attended to my own anxious feelings.

Smooth.

His words were few, but his face spoke volumes.   After what must have seemed an eternity to him, I finally saw what I had done.  (Guys don’t usually demonstrate their hurt, so when it shows, you know it must be big.)

How do you fix that?  When you’ve dealt a big blow, how can you recover?

We talked a while about surface things.  I cried into my breakfast.  I stared at my soggy cereal.  I couldn’t eat.  More small talk.

Then I blurted it out.  “I’m sorry…”

“I forgive you,” he said.

These were difficult words for both of us.  (Funny how the right words are some of the hardest to speak.)  But there is healing in those words.

For the next twenty-four hours, the air between us was palpable – not so much “charged,” like when you have an argument with someone, but more like a… marshmallow.  I mean, we were more polite, more careful about what we said to each other, more aware.

If I hadn’t apologized, or if he hadn’t forgiven me, the day might have been entirely different.  The words make all the difference in the world.  They are like honey in the ears and band-aids on the soul.  They don’t make the offense go away, but they go a long way to repair what was torn, or salve the open wound.

Do you need to apologize to someone?  Do you need to forgive someone?

Maybe both?

Say the words.

And let the healing begin.

“Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” (Colossians 3:13, NIV)

P.S.  For guidance in this area, check out my friend Dr. Jennifer Thomas’ blog about apology at www.drjenthomas.com, or her book, co-authored with Gary Chapman, The Five Languages of Apology.

P.P.S.  She really is my friend, and she didn’t put me up to this.  I just think she has a lot of good things to say on the subject.

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