They say, “It starts by saying, ‘I’m sorry'”.
But I say, that is the problem.
See, you and I are naturally controlled by ego.
Only once we control our ego can we get our act together and treat one another like Jesus would.
True apologies don’t start with saying anything.
They start with a negligent choice at best or a bad heart at worse, that in some way hurt someone you care about.
I know there our plenty of scenarios that don’t necessarily involved a friend/family you care for but that’s the context of this message. Most of this applies to any apology that’s actually legit
When we’ve done something to warrant an apology, a real offense against someone (that does not include having differing political views ;), we need to go through a simple but uncomfortable… ego-checking process.
Rather than saying anything it’s critical that you realize and acknowledge that you did damage of some kind, to yourself first (that’ll be your ‘aha moment or forehead slap or lightening bolt that strikes you when you realize you messed up).
Then we should find ourselves with a contrite heart, actually upset we hurt someone we love, unless we’re just an ass, and statistics show there are a few.
True sorrow that you hurt someone you care about should be the feeling in your gut, IF your conscience is sensitive.
Those who have grown cold toward others, even when they know they hurt someone, have calloused their conscience to at least the point they’re not bothered by the other’s pain. And if you’re in that spot or know someone who is, I really feel for you and pray for you because that is a tough spot to be in. And it’s not your job, duty, or even place to.
But there are ways around that too, no one gets to be an instigator and a victim, at least not at the same time (we all have moments).
Then you begin the real work of showing that you messed up. Yes, show it. Show you’re for real. Just so you know, this is where most “guys” show us they’re not “men”.
Ironic that what most have such a difficult time with is the thing that’s going to happen no matter what anyone does. No matter what, something is going to show itself true. The honest repentance or the faker who wants to settle things down, maybe get sex again, but is gonna keep doing the same thing. That cycle, by the way, must be broken with violent emotional and mental force. That’s deeper than a one-time screw-up.
For those not familiar with the term repentance, it just means moving in the opposite direction of the poor choice or behavior, as in you really didn’t mean it and you’re not doing that again. And damn, I always say this but it’s too important: don’t forget you and everyone else is human. I talk a lot of ideals and principles. Listen, it’s our heart’s intent that counts big time (and what God is paying attention to, more than your screw-ups), if you’re actually changing yourself, the process the bible calls sanctification. And trust me, I’ve been there… and deep down too.
Here’s an example: Little Sally: “Sorry for slapping the baby”.
Repentance is that Little Sally never slaps the baby again and even begins nurturing the baby.
(Look, I’ve been through 4 kids since all their births. I’ve missed next to nothing, thank Jesus. I promise you, if someone says they’ve never felt, which involves thinking about it, like slapping a baby… is a… liar. Let’s wrap this up.
It’s time to make amends, wherever and however possible (this is where you show you’re legit with all your precious, wonderful sounding words).
If I’m sorry I let my wife get overwhelmed with family duties but don’t help with a load of dishes, prepping a dinner or anything else that matters, then wtf bro?
If I’m sorry I forgot to pick you up… I’m going to give you two rides next time. (Again, this is the guiding thought process, not always these literal things)
If I’m sorry I broke your thing but don’t buy you a new thing, then w… tf?
It’s not about saying you’re sorry or really saying anything.
Words are hollow. We fill them with action. Then, moving forward, your word (what you say) actually means more than before. And that can continue to build forever. Then you get to a point where if you say something, that is 100% trusted by those closest to you.
I’ll be doing a piece on building, losing and rebuilding trust. This is obviously useful for romantic relationships but every bit as helpful, if not more so, for young people entering the workplace for the first time, or for someone in business this is non-negotiable and critical to your ability to eat food and live indoors. At 27 years old I had made enough dumb decisions that I had destroyed any trust I had built with anyone in my life.
RE: our story with the affairs, drug addition and divorce… below is a 4-minute video documentary about it. It’s from a little while ago, please bear with the non-4K quality.
A real apology is about showing you FEEL the damage on their behalf and then doing something to remedy it. Something.
When my wife (ex-wife) and I began talking again, I had already changed my phone number and deleted the secret email I had used to prove to her I was for real. I didn’t say anything… I just did it.
Stop saying you’re sorry.
Show that you’re hurt by hurting them… and change. I dare you.
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