Self-Defense

“Please forgive me for what you think I did.”

We’re excusers, defenders, and egotists by nature—our fallen nature. Our knee-jerk reaction is self-defense. And as Christians we often Christianize it with "un- apologies"—some as creative and meaningless as the one above. 

But there’s more:
  • “I’m sorry you were offended” a way to apologize without admitting blame.
  • “ I’m sorry if I did anything to offend you”— vague enough to keep our ego intact.
  • “Please forgive me, but….” giving us the ability to tack on excuses and accusations thus voiding the apology.
  • "You misunderstood" allowing us to justify rude or selfish acts by explaining our motives (i.e. it's not what I did, it's what I thought that matters).*
We can’t do anything about others' un-apologies, but we can ask the Lord to free us from the bondage of our own self-defense. 

Capture us by your love, Lord, so we can honestly repent of sin.
 
Unfortunately, all of these un-apologies I've heard or used myself. 
* There are times when explanations are in order, but we often use this excuse to explain away things we've done wrong. Just because we didn't mean to be rude doesn't mean we weren't rude!
See James 4:8-10 and 1 John 1:8-10.
Related 1-Minute BLN:  "He Apologized for His Affair" 
Related Marriage post: Telling Your Husband You're Sorry 

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5 comments:

  1. I see myself in those ego-protecting apologies. I want to let Christ have my heart and be more humble. Self defense is enslaving!

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  2. Hi Gail - love love love this post, no apologies for that, lol
    God bless
    Tracy

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  3. So true. I try hard to apologize correctly, even when it hurts my flesh. Harder yet is to complete the sincere apology with the request, "Will you forgive me?". I find when I do this and the person responds with forgivness there is a complete clearing of the air more so than with an apology only.

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    Replies
    1. So true, Angie. The correct thing is to ask forgiveness, and doing that eliminates the opportunity for most of these excuses, doesn't it?

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  4. It is so difficult to give an truly honest apology. This was such a good post. A good reminder to be humble before God and others, especially our husband.

    ReplyDelete

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