We have all received an apology that was less than heart-felt.
Saying sorry is something everyone has to do at some point in their life. It is also something everyone struggles with at some point in their life. Sometimes it is hard to know the right thing to say. Sometimes we know the right thing to say but struggle to say it.
For our residents here at Joy Ranch saying – and hearing – “I’m sorry” is often a new experience.
And it can be a bit tricky to navigate.
A good apology is more than “I’m sorry” and in an effort to communicate this, as well as the importance of how we treat others; we use an apology letter template that looks something like this:
I am sorry for _____________
It was wrong because _______________
I will make it right by _______________
After this letter has been finished we talk about ways the situation could have been handled differently, or what they might have liked someone to do if the situation were reversed.
This time is also used to reiterate Jesus’ words about treating others the way we want to be treated. If you don’t want someone doing it to you, it is most likely true that they don’t want you doing it to them.
A form of “restitution” is not always a bad idea either – to teach the value of helping others and sow seeds of kindness. Maybe the resident who needs to apologize will also do the other child’s chore for them. Or gift a privilege they have earned.
“Love . . . . . . . . keeps no record of being wronged.” 1 Corinthians 13
It is always wise to bestow upon others that which we wish they would bestow upon us.