Tuesday, June 25, 2019

From the Heart: I’m Sorry

Read Matt. 5:21-26

v.22 – I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment.

A few years ago an old Christian man was ask to deliver a short message at the church where he worshiped. It was late December just prior to Christmas. His comments were to be centered around the Lord’s Supper, to help prepare their minds to be centered on the sacrifice of Jesus and the covenant established by Him just prior to his death on the cross. Now this man had done this many times before and never without forethought and preparation and this time was no different.

About a week later one of the church elders ask him to meet with him at the church building, they needed to talk. So the two men met privately and the church elder told him that his remarks before the Lord’s Supper were inappropriate. That he had said something that wasn’t true according to the scriptures. Well they discussed what was said and looked at some scriptures but the old man still could not see where he had said anything that was offensive or unscriptural. They both left the meeting that day with the matter unsettled.

Although they continued to worship together and fellowship each other the matter remained unsettled for months. This continued to bother the old Christian so he went to visit the church elder who had become ill and was in a rehab facility. The old Christian man told the church elder that he was sorry for anything he had said that caused him and or others to be concerned. He realized that his friend, the elder was simply doing what he believed to be his duty as an overseer of the church. His friend the elder was very receptive so they prayed and hugged each other and the matter was settled. 

Sometimes its really hard to say “I’m sorry.” Even though you feel you were right in a matter you can still feel genuine sorrow for the harm that your words or actions may have caused others. 

When I was thinking about this it reminded me of a story I read in a book named “Reality” written by Stanley Voke. He tells about a young boy whose morning got started off badly. He complained about the clothes he had to wear. He griped about what he had for breakfast and refused to eat. Then he began to annoy his sisters. He soon found himself so tangled up in trouble that the world seemed to be crumbling around him. Finally his father took him aside and said, “Now look young man; we have had nothing but trouble this morning. What are you going to do about yourself? The boy said nothing for a moment. Then his eyes filled with tears as he blurted out, “I’m sorry Daddy!” Would you believe it, in two minutes the world was right again. The family was reconciled, the tears were wiped away and strangely everything seemed as it should be.

At times we all do and say things that hurt or offend other people. When this happens a wedge is driven between them. Bitterness might then arise. For the relationship to be restored, there needs to be an “I’m sorry” from the offender. All too often, though we refuse to apologize. Pride gets in the way. We’re not willing to be vulnerable by lowering ourselves to make such a confession. But when we do the rewards are great because we are obeying the Lord.

If we have offended someone by harsh words or an unkind act, let’s swallow our pride and ask for forgiveness. We need to say to them, “I’m sorry” and really mean it!

Have you hurt a friend or brother?

Go at once and make things right;

From your heart say, I am sorry.

How these words bring God delight!

— A Poem by D.J.D.

PRAYER:

Our Most Gracious and Loving Heavenly Father, what a wonderful blessing we have to be able to speak to YOU in prayer. To praise and glorify You as our God, the Creator of all things and lover of our souls. Thank You Father for your Love and your forgiveness when we sin and act as though others don’t matter and concentrate too much on ourselves. Help us Father to always follow the example of Jesus, the one who loved us so much that he was willing to take our sins away by his sacrifice on the cross. Forgive us Father when we fall and pick us up, dust us off and help us start anew. (In Jesus Holy Name!) AMEN!

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