Forgive Me…

The tongue has the power of life and death,
    and those who love it will eat its fruit                                          Proverbs 18:21

I was speaking recently with a client about the concept of forgiveness. We discussed the difference between saying “I’m Sorry”, and saying “Forgive Me”. She was struck by the simple nuance and power of the wording. I suggested that there can be a large difference in attitude and perception between those statements.

When one says “I’m sorry”, there may indeed be true repentance, but the control of the sentiment belongs to the one apologizing. The words, while perhaps being sincere, can sound trite and hollow- almost like a “drive-by” statement. It may feel something like, “there I’ve said the magic words, now I’m OK”

Asking for forgiveness, on the other hand carries a real sense of humility. One is asking the other person, the offended party, to free us from guilt. The one seeking forgiveness recognizes that the power here is in the hands of the one who was offended. The offender puts him/herself in the hands of the offended person.

So, just a little thought for today. Words have power, and can connote different meanings depending on how they are used. My client found this to be very meaningful, and I hope that you do too!

Prayer: Lord, help us to choose our words wisely, Amen

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