Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift. (Matthew 5:23–24 NIV)
You may have been shocked as I was to see the pictures of Prince Philip’s recent car crash. As he pulled out of a driveway his Land Rover collided with a Kia and flipped over. The 97-year-old prince was fortunate to get out alive, whilst Ms Fairweather, a passenger in the Kia, suffered a broken wrist.
Following complaints that she had received no direct communication from Prince Philip after the accident, a letter of apology was issued earlier this week which seemed to alter her attitude. She said ‘I thought it was a really nice touch that he signed it off as Philip and not a formal title. I was pleasantly surprised because of the personalised nature.’
Apologies can have a powerful effect on people who might otherwise be antagonistic. I’ve seen how they can defuse issues and reconcile people; whereas if they go unsaid attitudes can harden and deepen making it much more difficult to achieve a resolution. Perhaps that’s why Matthew encourages me to stop any religious activity in order to first be reconciled to someone I have a problem with?
I could write more about apologising, but I think I need to stop and make some apologies; how about you?
Have a good week apologising where you need to,