This is the 2nd post for the 31days challenge. I won’t make this one long because this is a pretty simple concept but rarely practiced in so many homes. Saying “Sorry”, meaning it and forgiving.
As a small child my mother would FORCE my sisters and I to say sorry and hug and say “I love you” following one of our indiscretions. I have done the same with my kids. When they’re 2, 3 or even 4 the whole episode can be quite comical followed by a couple of “awww”s and giggles from the guilty party. It’s not usually that hard to get little ones to see the error of their ways and apologize.
Fast forward to my life. An 11 year old, 13 year old, 15 year old(all girls) and my almost 17 year old know-it-all son and we have an all out war on our hands , rolling of the eyes and “I’m SARRRRRRRYYYYYYY” in the snarkiest of tones. Grrr. That gets me. Teaching the proper way to apologize and then forgive is not easy. It must be modeled. And I am most willing to admit that it has not been easy for me to do either.
So, where do we go from here? I recently had the privilege of hearing Dr. Gary Chapman speak about the 5 Love Languages of Apology. What an eye-opener!! I get now why I have struggled with the ritualistic “I’m Sorry”. It’s not enough….for me. But maybe it is for one or more of my kids. I have to get past the whys and hows and all that. Simply put, when someone apologizes, don’t analyze how they did it, just forgive them and move on. Yes, it is important that kids are repentant and remorseful. Yes, it is critical that forgiveness is given. But we mothers(and sometimes fathers) tend to hover and criticize how our kids DO apologies to the point where they don’t even WANT to apologize. So my word for you today is this: if you have hurt your kids or your husband, if you have done something, said something or acted in a way that was inappropriate for the age or stage of your child….go to them. Just go and tell them that you messed up. Because we moms are not perfect(even though we really want neighbour Suzie Q to think so). And we’re certainly not going to teach our kids anything about love, humility or apology if we don’t model it first. Hug your kids, say you’re sorry and accept their forgiveness(even if they don’t say it the way you want them to).
Colossians 3 : 12-14 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
~ Tomorrow~ a special TANGIBLE way to SHOW LOVE to everyone in your house…it’s going to be easy for you and a blessing to them!~