What To Do When We Hurt Others

13 September 2017

Last week in Chapel we were looking at a passage from the life of King David. In this passage David was having to flee for his life and as he was leaving a person who obviously bore a grudge against him and took it as an opportunity to cause David some grief. He hurled abuse and threw rocks at David and his men. He basically treated David with complete disrespect.

Not that long after, David is returning to the capital as the rightful King of the nation and now had an opportunity to settle a few scores if he wanted to. But as David is returning the man who abused David races out to meet him and fell at David’s feet, acknowledged that he was wrong and apologised to David.

As I said to the boys, we will all mistakes. There are times when we will let people down or hurt them through our words or actions. As this is a given, the important thing is how we act when we realise we have hurt someone. From the above passage I see that there are three things we should do.

  1. Take responsibility for our actions. We need to acknowledge when we are wrong, when we are selfish and not make excuses for it or blame others. If we have done the wrong thing then put our hand up and acknowledge.
  2. We then need to seek out the person we have hurt. Too often we hide from that person or avoid them. Or maybe we pretend nothing happened and kind of hope they will just forget about it. The person in this passage sought David out. When we have hurt someone we should seek that person out in person. And when we meet them….
  3. We should apologise to them. Don’t play games or make excuses but rather try to do whatever we can to restore the relationship.

Ultimately it is our relationships that make life meaningful and special. So we should do whatever we can to keep those relationships strong and healthy. That means humbling ourselves and putting in the effort that is required after we have let someone down. I pray that God may strengthen us all and guide us as we seek to care for those people around us.

As the College Chaplain, my role is to support and serve all the members of the college community. So if I can be of assistance to you or your family or if you ever wish to give me any comments or feedback on these ‘Chaplain’s Corner’ articles then please email me on: mccarthys@mbbc.qld.edu.au

Shane McCarthy
College Chaplain

Back to top