I was tricked. A situation was presented. I voiced my opinion. The person flipped sides, and started defending the opposite position. Before I knew it, we were arguing. What happened?
Have you ever gotten drawn into an argument that you never saw coming? What did you do about it?
I let the issue rest for a while, but then I pulled this person aside. I told them I was sorry that we had disagreed. I told them that at first it sounded like they thought they could get into trouble. I was concerned about that. Then they said they could not, and it wasn’t possible. Half smiling I said, “I was tricked!” They too said they were sorry, and we hugged.
The situation arose because someone spoke before they had thought something through. We have all done that. My reaction came out of love and concern for this other person. I did not have all the facts, but I could not understand the risk that I thought they were taking. It made no sense. In reality, there was no risk.
I missed the fact that they had misstated their original position. I only realized this because I shut my mouth and started thinking about what was being said. Then I asked a question or two. Sometimes I am just too busy talking to listen. Have you ever done that?
What a mess we had made of the whole conversation!
And what joy we had when we both apologized!
Now think about this. How wrong was I? I only wanted what was best for this other person, right? And I was tricked to some degree, right?
Well, if I really wanted what is best for this other person, I needed to apologize. Why risk them carrying any hurt around because I did not understand what they were trying to tell me? Why leave them mad or thinking that I was mad when I was not? Why not heal that hurt?
Saying and meaning that I was sorry for my role in that argument cost me nothing. Explaining my confusion and concern for them gave them affirmation that they are important to me. They are more important to me than my trying to prove that I am right – when I am not – over something that does not matter in the long run.
Do you care enough to say you are sorry when you are wrong and make things right immediately, or do you wait?
Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment: But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire. Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.
Don’t let your relationship with others come between you and God. I encourage you to make things right immediately. Stay up-to-date. It’s good for you. It’s good for them. Most importantly, it’s what God would have you to do.