I’m Sorry

Surrounded by thousands of others, I was excited and ready to enter into a time of passionate praise and worship.  This was my place where I could connect with God, where I heard from Him, where I would lose myself in His presence.  This is where healing, peace, encouragement,  and revelation took place.  I live for this time in my week and nothing makes me feel closer to God than when I am lost in song to Him.  As the music began, I told God I was excited to be with Him and get a special Word.

As quickly as I had communicated that, I heard His voice in my head saying, “Bonnie, I’m glad you want to have unhindered time with me, but in order to have that freedom, you first need to get on your knees before your husband and apologize to him for the lack of respect and honor that you have been showing him.”

Perhaps the music was too loud and I didn’t hear correctly.  I thought that maybe I would check in with God a little later after the “what now seemed like noise” stopped.  Had God cut me off?

Turns out God was still saying the same thing once the music stopped.  Of course there was a list of excuses that I wanted to give God for why I was acting the way I was.  Finger pointing is so easy to do.  I’m convinced the devil gives us a million lies to believe as to why the other person is the instigator or guilty party.  And when we fall for that deception, pride and stubbornness finds a way to settle in and make itself at home.

Truth be told, I crave open communion in worship with God, and I don’t want to be cut off from His blessings or our intimate time together.

“The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit.  You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God.”  Psalm 51:17

We got home from church and in our bathroom, I humbled myself, got on my knees, and apologized to Glenn for the way I had treated him.  No excuses or blame.  No matter what, I was responsible for my behavior and actions.  Why on my knees you may ask?  For my tendency to be a domineering or strong personality, I needed to be in a humble position.  I was to ask nothing in return.

In my filing cabinet of sermon notes, I can’t seem to find too many on the need to say sorry to others.  We have a lot of messages on having to forgive and let go of offense, which is so necessary.  At the same time then, the focus is strongly on how others are committing the offense, which excuses us from any responsibility.

It just so happens that there is a pretty popular character in scripture that learned the price of sin and an unrepentant heart.  I love Psalm 51 which was written by David after having to be confronted by Nathan. Nathan pointed out David’s unconfessed sin which he was carrying around from his affair with Bathsheba and from murdering her husband Uriah.  Yes David.  The man after God’s own heart was very guilty.

In Psalm 51 though, it talks about his broken relationship with God because of his unconfessed sin.  David gives us a window into his heart and soul and the place he was in during this dark time.  He felt stained, shame, guilt, broken, that his joy was gone, and that he had been removed from the presence of God and the Holy Spirit (vs. 1, 2, 8, 9, 11). 

What I love about David is that he was not proud and arrogant when Nathan approached him.  He immediately humbled himself.  Why he could not figure out the reason for his dark place before that I have no clue.  Adultery and murder seem to be pretty obvious offenses.  

Sometimes our sin seems to be less obvious.  Or maybe again we are looking at the other person being the one at fault.  How often though,  have we provoked the behavior or treatment that we are receiving from another and then turned it on them?

Regardless of our responses, once confronted, David was very quick to repent.  I absolutely love the worship song that was created out of the confession of his heart in verses 10-12.  

“Create in me a clean heart, O God.  Renew a loyal spirit within me.  Do not banish me from your presence, and don’t take your Holy Spirit from me.  Restore to me the joy of your salvation and make me willing to obey you.”  Psalm 51:10-12

When I personally am in turmoil and feeling upset with someone else, I will sing these words over and over again until I have allowed God to soften my heart and point out where I may be at fault.  Sometimes I have had to walk for miles in stubbornness, singing it on repeat before my posture has been corrected to one of humility and repentance.

I may have been that child that my parents needed to consistently make apologize to others for wrongdoings.  So perhaps by default, apologizing is now part of my DNA.  But I desperately want that open relationship with God and others.  The inability to confess when I am wrong gets in the way of that very quickly.  

2 Timothy 2:8 makes it clear that controversy, wrath, dissension, and strife are not what He desires in our lives when we come to worship.

“In every place of worship I want men to pray with holy hands lifted up to God, free from anger and controversy.” 2 Timothy 2:8

I don’t know about you, but when I am in a “space” that may not resemble a renewed mind or perhaps a right spirit towards someone else, I find it hard to raise my hands in worship.  There is that unconfessed sin that needs to be taken care of.  It may be just my attitude or it may be  brokenness with another that I need to go and make right.

Let me tell you, at that moment, you are not to just think and pray on it.  You need to RUN to that confession.  Make it right so that you can experience the fullness of joy and blessings that God wants to shower on you.  There are so many benefits to confession or saying “I’m sorry.”

“Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.  The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results.”  James 5:16

That moment on the bathroom floor apologizing to Glenn was the start of healing that needed to happen in our relationship.  Beautiful things started to take place in the days that followed.  I promise you that was absolutely not the last time I needed to say sorry.  Unfortunately, or maybe not so unfortunately, if you are in a relationship with me, you will have had to hear me say those very words to you.

Freedom in my relationship with God means everything to me.   Who might you need to say sorry to today?  It is a humbling but freeing experience.

“The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit.  You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God.”   Psalm 51:17

Published by Bonnie

I am determined to live a life that is a calling beyond myself. For too many years I lived out the lies I believed to be true about who I was...or wasn't. Regardless, I was on the outside what I believed on the inside. Who told you that? More than anything, I want you to believe that you are valuable and have so much to offer to the world around you. I know you are here to do great things.

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