Monday, January 25, 2016

It Takes Two


Surprisingly, I like to read the comics. They make me laugh, keep me young and sometimes reinforce a life lesson. I've been reading Blondie since I could read. (BTW, it's pretty funny how cartoon characters never age). This cartoon today portrayed an important lesson - we're all imperfect. If two people end up in a squabble both of you were wrong. One of you may have been less wrong than the other but you were both wrong because you ended up squabbling and walked away with hurt feelings. Hurt feelings can be the beginning of a permanent split in relationships. I've been on both sides of this equation in my life.

It is surprisingly easy in a squabble to think that you were not wrong. I think we all like to think highly of ourselves. But as humans there's a cause and effect factor - your behavior influences my actions and vice versa. No one squabbles with themselves, and if we are squabbling we are raising our voices, and thinking about how to win. We are not being kind or loving in that instance. So even though your part in the squabble may be minuscule, you played a part and both of you ought to apologize so that restoration can take place.

Dagwood and Herbert are lifelong friends, so I'm sure after many attempts at restoration they figured out that dual apologies were in order. In our lifelong friendships and relationships, there's a lot at stake when we both can't say "I'm sorry" with sincerity. Sometimes the one who apologizes first is the one who recognizes their offense, or sometimes they're just trying to be the bigger person, recognizing what's at stake. Either way, it requires a degree of humility to apologize but our relationships are worth it. Let's not let small squabbles turn into generational rifts.

Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Philippians 2:3 [KJV]

Is it easier or more difficult to forgive those that you have a close relationship with? Do you always feel you're right in a squabble? Is it possible you're not?

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