The call began with words that gave away what was to come next. “Dad, it’s Amy, and I’m ok.” Once that was settled, our younger daughter went on to describe that she’d been in a minor fender-bender and her car was not drivable in its current condition.
After expressing genuine thankfulness that she was ok, and assuring her that there were millions of cars on the road and only one her, I did what dads do – I started asking questions. Specifically, I wanted to know how the accident had occurred, and just who had run into my precious kiddo.
The more she described the scene, the more uncomfortable I became because it was sounding like she was at fault, and I wasn’t quite willing to accept that. So, I started pressing for any shred of evidence that suggested that the other driver involved had in some way contributed to the accident. That’s when it happened – when she boldly went where few people dare to go – she immediately and decisively acknowledged her guilt. She explained what happened, but offered no excuses. “Dad, there’s no way around it, it was my fault.”
I admit that my respect for her grew that day – not for her driving ability, but for something much more important – accepting complete responsibility for her actions. There was need to cover the cost for vehicle repairs, but there was no need for shame or hiding the truth. She acknowledged the truth, paid the price, and moved forward with a clear conscience.
How different from when Adam blamed Eve for his sin, and Eve blamed the serpent for hers (Genesis 3:12-13). It’s tempting to hide our guilt and shift the blame, but paradoxically there’s no freedom in that. What’s your typical reaction to your guilt? Hide and blame? Or confess and receive God’s forgiveness? The choice is always ours. –Dave
Do not lie. Do not deceive one another. (Leviticus 19:11)
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