The Courage To Forgive
What does it take to forgive someone? … or, for that matter, for someone to forgive you?
Does a person have to ask for forgiveness? ‘Of course’, you say and I think you would be right. If someone truly seeks our forgiveness they will come and ask us to forgive them. The Bible even says, “If we confess our sins, he [God] is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).
You would probably add, the person needs to have a repentant attitude and again I think you would be right. I’m not inclined to forgive someone if I don’t see some outward reflection that makes me think they are sincerely sorry. If they just turn around and intentionally commit the same act again I have to wonder if they were sorry at all or just playing a game.
Enter on the scene the latest public display of non-forgiveness – Imus. I don’t want to get into his remark… it was thoughtless. Yet, he has done both of the above: 1) he has asked for forgiveness and 2) he is sincerely sorry. Many still seem not to forgive him. It would be different if he lived a life of contempt and discrimination, but this doesn’t seem to be the case. I don’t know (or want to know) the intimate details of his personal life, but I would guess that under the veneer he is a regular guy filled with most of the foibles that regular people have. Yet because of a careless remark, sponsors are jumping ship right and left and kowtowing to the whiners.
Wouldn’t it be a nice change hear sponsors say, ‘You know, we all let our mouth get a little ahead of our brain occasionally, and this guy seems to be sincerely sorry. He has been good for our products and just because he had a brain failure, we’re going to give him another chance’, and stick with him.’
My what a courageous and refreshing change that would be.