Church News

October 5, 2012

Food for Heart, Oct. 5, 2012

— “Love means never having to say your sorry.” Those of you my age and older will recognize these words as a line from a popular move in the sixties, “Love Story.” Great fiction movie. Great line in a movie. As people will do, the public quickly picked up on these poetic words and they became a very popular ‘catch phrase.’

To the ears of an innocent 16-year-old I remember thinking ... “True that! If you really love someone you don’t hurt them in the first place, then there’s no reason to have to say your sorry.” How idealistic ... how romantic ... how very untrue. All these many years later, I’ve learned just the opposite to be  true. In truth love REALLY means being able to say your sorry.

To love you have to be honest ... to be honest means you may disagree ... to disagree means you may get angry ... to get angry means you may say something you didn’t mean to say. Since no one is perfect it is almost certain that if you truly love someone at sometime or another you most definitely will hurt them by something you say.  Whether in anger and on purpose, or ignorantly and accidental, painful words at some point are sure to be  spoken and once spoken cannot be taken back.

Whether you were right or wrong, justified or completely off base doesn’t matter. Saying you are sorry doesn’t mean you’re saying you were wrong ... it means you’re saying, “I didn’t mean to hurt you.”

Does that make everything right? Of course not, but it’s a start. Saying you’re sorry opens the heart for healing. Matthew 5:9, “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called the sons of God.” Being able to say “I’m sorry” takes a humble spirit. Being able to accept these words takes a merciful spirit. And both take the love of God operating in our lives.

For all my years of living I find myself still incapable, unqualified and totally inept in myself alone at telling anyone what love is. However there is an excellent and detailed definition to be found in The Word in 1 Corinthians chapter 13.

I can however tell you WHO love is. The Word tells me in 1 John 4:8 that “God is love.” Not that He has it. Not that He gives it. But rather He IS it. The Greek word used here is ‘agape’ which translates as the highest and purest form of love.

A love that surpasses all other types of affection. A love that manifests itself in us and works through us. This kind of love is an empowering love ... a humbling love ... a selfless love. A love that means “I CAN say I’m sorry.”

(Sherrie Lambert is enjoying some time off with her husband and left this column for her readers to enjoy while she is away. Watch for a new Food for Heart column next Friday.)

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