That very moment when you are totally enraged, filled with wrath, strong judgments and harsh words that you want to pour out on that person, and just as you charge into the room, ready to release the bomb – not minding what it will do to the person or how he/she will feel, you are met with someone seated or standing quietly, defenseless, remorseful, with a very pitiful and repentant look, and the person says to you, simply, “I am sorry!”

Wow! It is just as though you have been crippled and completely weakened, not able to move again; you may even just freeze up. And like weights dropping off drooping shoulders, your charges, anger, judgments, condemnations fall off; you can’t even find those very harsh piercing words you had premeditated on to say. You stand there looking like a weakling, confused, not knowing what else to say or do – because, of course, you can’t do what you had in mind to do, and you never expected the person will be repentant. You never expected to hear, “I am sorry!”

How powerful those words are! They throw you off balance, disarm you, make you lose your right to exert judgment or punishment, weaken and expose your humanity, while also imploring the demonstration of your share of divinity. Indeed, those three words could be very powerful, especially when backed with tonal, facial or other expressions that mirror sincere remorse and repentance. If so it be that these words are that powerful and able to quench/calm the fiery darts of an offended fellow to his offender, why does it seem so hard a tool to be employed in settling our disputes and contentions?

Perhaps we don’t get to have many persons say these words, even when they know they are the wrong, blamable party in the rift, because of pride – the ego thing. Somehow, it looks as though when someone admits to a fault, takes responsibility for blames, and offers apology, such person appears weak, and most people detest that position of weakness. But I believe otherwise. I believe that it takes so much strength and courage to be bold enough to own up to the faults and offer an apology.

I think it is a show of great inner strength and confidence for someone to risk their ego, be strong enough inside not to mind appearing weak before others, take the lead in restoring peace and calm, and say, “I am sorry.” It is very easy for you to argue daftly, insist on your rightness, parade your ego and insecurity, allow the problem escalate, take no responsibility for any wrong doings, and berate the other party on and on; anybody can always do that without giving it a second thought. That is what is real weakness. But, taking the lead to restore peace, mend the broken relationship, bring back love and unity, is real strength and it takes a really strong person to do so.

Sometimes too, we don’t need to be the ones who are at fault, neither do we do it to show the other party is faultless and perfect. But because we value the relationship, we cherish the peace, we care about the unity, and we are concerned about the appropriateness of things, we take the responsibility of makings things right, even if it means taking blames for the other person’s faults. We do it because we understand how blessed it is to be peacemakers.

How very many relationships we could have saved; how very many wars we could have avoided; how very many destructions could not have happened and how untold the peace our “world” would have known if we all knew how to say, simply, yet sincerely, “I am sorry!” Oh the tons in history of wars as a result of a man’s selfish pride and inability to be humble and repentant – both wars of words and of swords! How much love we miss for selfish justifications!

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