Romans 12:18, 14:19
If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification.
There is nothing good about being stingy with apologies.
As a child, we often went to my grandparents’ cabin on Leech Lake in Minnesota. Yes, the lake lives up to its name. After swimming, I often had to peel leeches off my legs. With almost fifteen thousand lakes in Minnesota, I often wondered: why did they choose this particular lake? Was the cabin acquired at a discount price? In any case, I learned the sooner I removed every leech, the less blood I lost.
The leeches are a metaphor for making apologies. It might not be easy for you, but make them early and be sure that you say all of them: do not miss a single one. When you live in denial about the necessity of removing leeches or making apologies, this can literally suck the life out of you. Take sufficient time to think through your relationships and your actions. However challenging or inconvenient it is, choose to be extremely honest. If you contributed to the problem, either intentionally or unintentionally, own it and take responsibility.
The Bible says, “Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold (Ephesians 4:26-27).” In my marriage, there have been times when I tried to fall asleep, knowing that my wife and I needed to reconcile. After about an hour of tossing and turning in bed, I usually ask the question, “Can we talk now?” Those conversations proceed much better when my comments are gentle and I describe what I can do differently. An apology is often the primary bridge to forgiveness and reconciliation. Be the first person to start the healing process.
What happens in relationships when you choose humility- is there someone you need to apologize to today?
For more from Pastor Jesse Bradley and Activate Media Ministries, visit www.activatelife.org