What is one of the most effective ways to bring reconciliation and healing to a rift in a relationship?
A genuine apology. It’s not as easy as you’d think. Most of us don’t like to admit we are wrong. We have to humble ourselves to do so but the benefits are amazing. The power of an apology if received, paves the way for us to enjoy the connection and relationship we desire.
Last month, my sister blessed me by flying me to an art retreat in Wisconsin on her frequent flyer miles. It was a wonderful much needed break and kind of her to do that for me! We talked about the power of kind acts in Kindness Gives you Favor with People which you can read when you finish this post.
I met a mother, Annie and her daughter, Stefanie who enjoyed the art retreat together. I commented, “That is so special that you can share this as mother and daughter.”
“Well, it wasn’t always like that,” Stefanie told me. “Three years ago, I couldn’t stand to be around my mother.”
“And I couldn’t bear to be around her.” Annie said.
Stefanie explained, “I harbored a lot of anger and bitterness toward my mom for some things she did during my growing up years.”
“What changed that?” I asked.
“My mom apologized and it helped me to forgive her.” Stefanie said.
Annie shared, “I cried when I realized what I had done to my kids because of the circumstances of my divorce. I went to each of them and asked for forgiveness, not to make excuses but to ask for forgiveness.”
Annie smiled, “Before there was tension in our relationship. Now we look for time to be together and enjoy doing things together. She even called me the other day instead of calling a friend. That was so special to me.”
This is the beauty of God’s ways of reconciliation. Now Annie and Stefanie enjoy all they each have to give to each other and the joy of relationship.
“Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift.” Matthew 5:23,24 (NIV 1984)