Robust Apologies Release Abundant Grace

How often we hear celebrities and politicians trying walk back “misstatements” and gaffes.  It is often hilarious to see the gymnastics of their PR machines attempting to re-create the past and find that crack to wiggle through.

“I was taken out of context.”

“Clearly that is not what I meant.”

“I was tired.”

“I was dehydrated.”

“Anyone who knows me would know that I could not have meant that the way it is being portrayed.”

“My position has evolved.”

“I regret if anyone was offended.”


It is hard to imagine what people think they gain from this.  Certainly not credibility or respect, though one might admire their brass.

Here is an example of a real apology.  Click here for context.  This details are a bit complicated, but for the purposes of this blog, I’m more concerned with the beautiful assurance of forgiveness that can come with a real repentance.  See what you think:

Dishonesty never heals, and the truth glossed over cannot bring freedom. How much better it would have been for the Rev. Canon Dr. Unuigbe and for the Church as a whole if he had simply come clean as we all must do when we sin or err. Had he confessed, not only to his Primate, but to all the church, publicly (for he erred publicly), and said

“I have sinned. I have taught what is false and led many away from the true Gospel. I now know that I was wrong and how I regret my words and actions. I pray that you, and most of all, my Lord might have mercy on me and forgive me for my sins.”

To such a confession the Church would throw open her arms in joyful welcome. And that earthly welcome is only a shadow of the blood-bought mercy, forgiveness, grace, and compassion, that flows from our Savior’s kind heart to all who repent and cry to him for help. To mince words, to fail to acknowledge sin in its depths, to stop short of requiring full confession, while it may seem a great kindness, dams up the rivers of cleansing and mercy that would otherwise flow unhindered.

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