Apology Accepted?

A devotional by Reverend Dr. Kevin Schwamb

This has not been a good week for United Airlines and its chief Oscar Munoz.  It all began with an overbooked flight on Tuesday and ended with airport police dragging Dr. David Dao off the plane because he did not wish to give up his seat.  In a press release immediately following the incident, Mr. Munoz stood by his employees and acknowledged no wrong doing.  But, everything changed once the incident went viral.  Within twenty-four hours United Airlines stock had fallen by 4% and Mr. Munzo was expressing his “…deepest apologies for what happened.”  However, because it wasn’t forthcoming, Mr. Munoz’s apology seems less than sincere and more about damage control.

The incident raises an interesting question, “What does a sincere apologize look like?”  The Bible addresses this question by means of the word repentance.  The sincerity of a person’s regret over doing what is wrong is measured by the change in direction that follows.  When King David finally admits his guilt, as a murderer and adulterer, he calls out to God and pleads for mercy.  David cries,  “Against you, and you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight, so that you are proved right when you speak and justified when you judge.”  King David’s about face, was followed by genuine sorrow and the realization that what he needed most was the LORD’s forgiveness.

Does the United Airlines incident and Mr. Munoz’s delayed apology reflect how we respond to sin in our life?  Are we reluctant in the beginning to own our sin and, when we are forced to admit it, do we hope a quick “I’m sorry” will be enough for God?  Good Friday is a reminder that we have all sinned and it is only through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ that we can know that our apology has been accepted and we are forgiven!