We strive to teach our kids this practice too: to apologize. But often, the forced apology doesn’t really make things right; it fuels the argument instead of resolving it. “I apologize for throwing your Legos…but if you hadn’t broken my doll…”
We want our children to get along with others and make right the wrongs they do, so we teach them:
“Apologize to her!”
“Say sorry to your brother. You owe him an apology.”
“Tell your sister that you’re sorry.”
But our children get in the same conflicts again and again. We do too. We wonder, can we ever learn to get along? So many times people resent saying sorry or won’t accept an apology from someone else. We are often stingy with our forgiveness.
Have you ever wondered why saying sorry, or apologizing comes up short sometimes? Why do we live with broken relationships?
Apology. The word origin is “a speech in one’s own defense.” We can’t restore harmony with others when we are more interested in being right, than being in right relationship.
Sorry. It describes our feelings, it means distressed, grieved, and full of sorrow. The Bible calls this a “contrite heart” (Psalm 51:17). And while remorse is certainly an important part of reconciling with others, focusing on our own feelings is not enough. Telling someone you’re sorry starts, and ends, with YOU, which doesn’t necessarily make amends or bridge the gap between another heart and yours.
To make matters worse, being forced (by a well-meaning mother) to say something when it isn’t true (that you feel sorry when you really still feel angry) can harden your heart, rather than soften it.
God’s Word calls us to a higher standard, but do we even know what that looks like?
…Read the rest of this post over at ChristianMommyBlogger.com Thank you Julie over at CMB.com for helping me share my book with your readers! 🙂