The power of an apol­ogy

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - National News -

For more info: James 5 vs 16

“Con­fess your tres­passes to one an­other, and pray for one an­other, that you may be healed. The ef­fec­tive, fer­vent prayer of a right­eous man avails much.”

How many times have you wronged some­one, whether you did it de­lib­er­ately or not but your ac­tions caused some­one else to be un­happy? I guess in our dayto-day lives it’s in­evitable that our ac­tions and words will some­times hurt other peo­ple and some­times the dam­age and effect will be sig­nif­i­cant.

For a while now I have been study­ing how peo­ple re­late to one an­other. For most of us, we find it eas­ier to hurt some­one and then pre­tend noth­ing has hap­pened and just get on with things as per norm. Some peo­ple take the moral high ground and refuse to ac­knowl­edge that they are in the wrong, they ac­tu­ally claim to be the ag­grieved party. Some then try to cover up their mis­takes and in the process they end up caus­ing even more harm to the other party.

Very few peo­ple are bold enough to step up and say: you know what, what I did was wrong and I am sorry. Pride of­ten pre­vents us from own­ing up to our mis­takes and apol­o­gis­ing. Our sense of im­por­tance does not al­low us to show hu­mil­ity or re­morse, we find that act of be­ing con­trite very de­mean­ing.

As the fa­mous say­ing goes; a stitch in time saves nine. You need to cor­rect a mis­take or sit­u­a­tion be­fore it es­ca­lates and goes too far and causes great dam­age. Some doors have been closed in your life for good sim­ply be­cause you did not apol­o­gise, you de­stroy a life­time re­la­tion­ship just be­cause of pride.

I have seen so many re­la­tion­ships de­stroyed over pride and self­ish­ness, when they could have been sal­vaged had one been hum­ble enough to apol­o­gise. Yes we all have dif­fer­ent per­son­al­i­ties and we re­act to things dif­fer­ently but de­cency is a qual­ity we should all pos­sess. So many need­less ar­gu­ments and pain could be averted if only we could be hum­ble enough to ac­knowl­edge that we can’t al­ways be right.

It’s not very easy for a hu­man be­ing to get to that level of ma­tu­rity where they are al­ways pre­pared to say the words “I am sorry”. The need of the hour is for peo­ple who can read­ily say “I was wrong, I am sorry, please for­give me”. These few words can pre­vent wars, fos­ter re­la­tion­ships, keep fam­i­lies to­gether and al­low peace and harmony to pre­vail.

Af­ter apol­o­gis­ing it’s im­por­tant to show a change in be­hav­iour, your ac­tions there­after must clearly re­flect a con­trite heart that is sorry oth­er­wise the words will have no mean­ing to the ag­grieved party. It may be easy to say I am sorry but the ac­tions ac­com­pa­ny­ing the words are the true tes­ta­ment of whether you mean it or not.

We have all done wrong to other peo­ple whether de­lib­er­ately or oth­er­wise. Let’s start mak­ing amends by do­ing the right things, start by telling your­self: I must change, I need to re­late with oth­ers a lot bet­ter than I am cur­rently do­ing, I do not live in a vac­uum but in a world where oth­ers mat­ter.

As you come to the re­al­i­sa­tion that ev­ery­one has been placed in your life for a pur­pose, you will be­gin to value them. No man is an island, we are all on a jour­ney to­gether and we need each other. Re­mem­ber when you hurt oth­ers that you may need them tomorrow and vice versa.

Words said in love will build; let’s build re­la­tion­ships and not de­stroy them. You and I need that very per­son we have shut out due to our in­sen­si­tiv­ity, lets be­gin to make amends. It starts with say­ing ‘‘I am sorry.’’

Be blessed.

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