May 31, 2014

I Am Sorry

Written by Boyd Bailey

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – May 31, 2014

Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death.    2 Corinthians 7:10

“I am sorry” are three freeing words. “I was wrong”; “You were right”; “I apologize”; “Please forgive me”. All of these phrases communicate culpability. Sincere sorrow means taking responsibility. You initiate peace because your desire is to repair the relationship. Disharmony and disconnection are not acceptable options. Yes, someone may take advantage of your goodwill, but that’s in God’s hands. Have faith that God expects behavior that brings reconciliation. You put the relationship at risk if you resist humbling yourself and apologizing. Someone has to start by saying, “I am sorry”. It is smart to extend your apology as soon as possible. A more powerful apology occurs when you admit your error, transgression, or sin before you are found out. You take the first step in asking forgiveness because you know it is the right thing to do.

Godly sorrow sends a message of change, for you want to change for Christ’s sake. You have sinned against your Savior and those you love. The pain inflicted is not worth continuing with the same bad habits. No one ever regretted repenting of sin. Godly sorrow leads to repentance, which results in transformation. Change occurs around a humble and honest heart. So, where do you start? Family is a logical place to extend your apologies. You hurt your parents by breaking off communication and care. Perhaps you have intentionally gone out of your way to not go there. There is a widening rift in the relationship. Now is the time to reach out and recover your relationship with your mom and dad. Take the time during the holiday season to pay a surprise visit or place a long overdue phone call. Start the conversation by saying, “I am sorry”.

Sincere sorrow is a relational magnet, and trust reoccurs around repentance. When others sense you have really changed, they extend trust. However, they may withhold that trust until you prove yourself worthy of it. People who have been burned in the past by shallow and insincere sorrow will not automatically engage. They need time to see that your apology is authentic. Sorrow that does not lead to change results in relational death. Sincere sorrow hurts your heart, causing you to weep visible or invisible tears of remorse. It makes you sick to think you let down the One who loves you the most.

On the flip side, be patient with those who ask your forgiveness. Forgive them and give them a chance to change, while releasing your anger and their broken promises to Jesus. Give them over to the Lord and pray for their repentance. God can do more with a person’s heart in a minute, than a lifetime of your nagging could ever accomplish. Do not hold them in contempt. Rather, entrust them to Christ. Give time for repentance to root out bad habits and destructive behaviors. Lies can be extracted by the everlasting love of God and replaced with His transforming truth. Accept apologies at face value and hope for the best. Pray for the work of the Holy Spirit to have His way in a humble heart. Be quick to forgive and just as quick to ask forgiveness. Replace fear with faith. Your sorrowful confession connects with Christ and with others. Therefore, take the first step and apologize. Ask for forgiveness, and surrender to your Savior. Become broken, for brokenness leads to freedom. Say, “I am sorry”, and see how your Savior blesses your apology.

Post/Tweet today: Sincere sorrow is a relational magnet, as trust reoccurs around repentance. #wisdomhunters

Taken from the May 31st reading in Boyd’s 365-day devotional book, “Seeking Daily the Heart of God vol. 1” …

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© 2014 by Boyd Bailey. All rights reserved.


  1. Kmac4him says:

    I can’t help but think about how Jesus modeled this at the worst possible moment of His life. In agony, suffering for our sins, He made sure to clear His heart: Father, Forgive Them, They Know Not What They Do… Wow…

    1. Gwynne says:

      Dear “Kmac4him”~
      Wow! You are so right! It truly is the most powerful example
      of forgiveness we have. Thank you for that important reminder to all of us. Once again, we are blessed by your comments and look forward to our “next visit”.
      Believing and trusting~

  2. Alisa says:

    Great post!
    I just wanted to ask about what my responsibility to reconcile is when the other person refuses. Two years later, I think I may have figured out what it was that made her so angry, but every encounter with her is so vicious that I’m reluctant to make contact, much less bring the whole thing up again. (Thank goodness she lives a few thousand miles away.) At the last contact, I suggested wiping the slate clean (not knowing how I had offended her, but only how badly she had hurt me). She refused, saying that things would only get better if we went to counseling together. Since counseling is a humanistic approach, I don’t really want to do that–besides, how am I going to do counseling from a different continent? So instead I offered her grace to cover over the offenses (again, only aware of how she had offended me).
    Jesus said to leave your gift at the altar and be reconciled first. But in this case, I can’t figure out how to do that. In good conscience, I have forgiven her in my heart, but without knowing what I did to cause her to break the relationship, I don’t really know what more I can do.
    I really want to be right before God in this matter. Do you have any wisdom for me?

    1. Gwynne says:

      Dear Alisa~
      Thank you so much to reaching out to Wisdom Hunters after reading the devotional, “I Am Sorry”. We are so thankful that God “spoke” to you through these words about forgiveness. Goodness, two years is a long time for you and your friend to be carrying this burden around. But your sincere willingness to look for ways to mend and heal this friendship is a wonderful example of your kind and caring heart.
      Alisa, the last few sentences of this devotional can possibly be the beginning steps for you.
      “Ask for forgiveness, and SURRENDER TO THE SAVIOR. Become broken, for brokenness leads to freedom. Say, “I am sorry’

      Isn’t it amazing that we have a Heavenly Father that wants us to come to Him to help us with our burdens? He is there, right beside us, waiting! WOW!
      “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light”.

      Please keep in touch and let us know how things are going. We are so thankful that you are a fellow wisdom hunter!
      Believing and trusting~
      P.S. One last thing~ that sentence in “I Am Sorry” that states “Pray for the work of the Holy Spirit to have His way in a humble heart” is so “on-target” for ALL OF US, right?

      “Be joyful always, pray continually; giving thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
      1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

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