Is it too late now to say sorry? I don’t particularly like the Biebs. I do like this song of his. But that’s not what I want to write about. 🙂
The other day, I was driving home from church with my daughters. It was after 5pm so traffic on Commerce Ave was building up. I was approaching the block where Jollibee and McDonald’s are, in front of Acacia Hotel. I don’t remember what we were talking about in the car, but I do know we were talking (you know how girls are) so I was not able to pay attention to the pedestrian lane in the middle of the road, not at a traffic light, that allows people to cross from the fastfood joints to I guess Commerce Center. Traffic suddenly halted, so I was right on the pedestrian lane. To my dismay, I saw a dad pushing a stroller while holding his toddler son by the hand. The stroller was empty, thank goodness. But the dad was not happy with me at all. He looked at my car, paused in front of it and scratched his head. He made sure to show me just how annoyed he was at me for making it hard for him and his son to cross the street, without really looking at me. I knew from his facial expression and body language that he was completely annoyed. I was blocking his way. Who knows, maybe he was stressed out. My blunder didn’t help. I’ve had those days, too, for sure.
As they emerged from the outermost lane (I was in the innermost), before the dad even saw my car, I noticed them already and I noticed where I was. Under my breath, I said “Oh no.” I knew I had made a mistake. I wanted to back up but there was a vehicle behind me. Danae asked me what was wrong but I couldn’t explain to her just yet. I was watching the father and son to make sure they were okay. As they clumsily made their way onto the island, which I doubt has a ramp, I found myself lowering my window and saying “I’m sorry.”
I don’t think he expected that. I didn’t expect that I would be quick to do that either. I hope he felt even a tad appeased by my apology. He did give me a glance and he did muster a tiny smile. I’m just grateful he didn’t hurl insults or yell at me for being a bad driver (ugh, I hate contributing to the bad rap women drivers get), even though he probably wanted to. I’m glad I apologized, audibly. I meant it.
I am also grateful for the opportunity to set an example for my kids. I hope that even when we’re not around to correct or remind them, they will take a position of humility when they make a mistake. I hope that they will not justify the wrong they do or blame others for it. I hope that even though they may feel and act defensive at first, they will not keep that wall of pride up. I hope that they will accept correction from others and seek forgiveness sincerely. I hope that they will care about people, and not be indifferent to their needs and their circumstances. I hope that they will look beyond the mess, so that they can see and appreciate the lesson. I hope for these now, not later. In their childhood, not to impress people or to prove something, but to honor God.
Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up. James 4:10
Humility is the fear of the Lord;
its wages are riches and honor and life. Proverbs 22:4
Finally, all of you, be like-minded, be sympathetic, love one another, be compassionate and humble. 1 Peter 3:8
Then our sons in their youth will be like well-nurtured plants, and our daughters will be like pillars carved to adorn a palace. Psalm 144:12