Today as I was driving I was praying and asking the Lord to help me in a situation and I was in earnest when suddenly it was like I hit a brick wall, no not in my van but in my spirit. I got a spanking like I haven’t had since I was ten and got my bottom warmed for talking in church, only this time it was God doing the spanking, it was if I were standing in front of a full length mirror looking at the “Portrait of Dorian Gray”,
I was horrified. What He showed me was that I was guilty of the very thing I was asking Him to fix and I realized that I couldn’t ask any further until I had repented of my own bad attitude and rectify it. I was busted! The next thing out of my mouth was Hebrews 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need. I spent the rest of my prayer time cleaning up my own act I’ll get back to the prayer later. You have to know when to say that you are wrong, or just….
Recently I was talking with my daughter about a situation between two acquaintances of ours that are having a controversy. We don’t know who is right and who is not but one thing for sure is that each of them is right in their own mind! When I felt we had exhausted the subject I said, “There are two words that could solve this whole problem, and that is for one of them to say ‘I’m sorry.’”
It made me think of something that happened about six years ago as I was in the kitchen cooking and preparing supper. I heard a loud exclamation from my grandson saying, “Oh NO, I spilled my tea!” I quickly gathered a cloth to go and clean it up hoping it hadn’t landed on the carpet. I am not exactly sure what happened next but it ended with his mother saying she was going to call his dad so he could have a “talk” with him! He seemed to not take that statement seriously and continued to do whatever it was that was displeasing his mother, suddenly the call was made and I was being summoned, “Mammy can you come here?” “Sure baby, what is it?” He put his little hands on both sides of my face as I leaned down to his level and he whispered, “I accept your apology”. I didn’t want to laugh out loud, but it was a struggle, his mom said, “What did you say?” He repeated it, the problem was that he was supposed to apologize to me, but it was very hard for those words to cross his eight-year-old lips and it was the subject of “a talk” about a few days before! Then he asked me a question, “Do you know what ‘apology’ means?” I answered him, “Yes” then from across the room his mom called out, “Gabe, what were you supposed to say?” He had put it off as long as he could and it finally happened, he squeezed out the words “I am sorry“. He looked so relieved the apology was over and asked me if I would give him a big hug! Of Course I did!
The incident was funny and made me think of “Happy Days” when the “Fonz” could never say that he was wrong! But in thinking about it, I realize that “I’m sorry” are two words that are very hard for most people to say. What is the solution?
Conduct yourself in a manner so that you never need to say them, easier said than done I know, however, I have a couple of scriptures for you to read and think about.
Proverbs 15:1 “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word, stirs up anger.” It is never easy to just stand there and take it when someone is being harsh with you, is it? However we need to remember, Proverbs 15:13 “the eyes of the Lord are in every place, keeping watch on the evil and the good.” So when you think that God doesn’t see the things you go through, you are wrong, He sees, He knows. Proverbs 15:4 “A wholesome tongue is a tree of life, but perverseness in it breaks the spirit”.