Wednesday, July 05, 2006

I’m Sorry for the Gaping Hole in Your Back

“I’m sorry.”

It’s the reply you would often hear for accidentally stepping on your friend’s foot, spilling wine on your neighbor’s rug, releasing an unplanned angry diatribe.

“I’m sorry.”

I’ve said it many times. More than often. I said it when I last argued with my wife. I said it when I opened the door to an occupied bathroom stall. I said it at my friend’s when I accidentally dropped his prized snoopy coffee mug and broke off the handle.

“I’m sorry.”

We all have said we’re sorry. Sometimes for little things; sometimes for big things. We say we’re sorry because deep in our psyche we believe if we FEEL badly for something we did we somehow deserve a greater level of forgiveness for doing that thing. It’s our emotional get out of jail free card.

We want the offended party to extend grace to us.

Often they do.

Sometimes, however, sorry just doesn’t cut it. Like in the case of Mary Carol Winkler.

You remember her, right? She’s the Church of Christ preacher’s wife who loved her husband to death.

This past week she was arraigned. She asked for bail. She wants out. As part of her pleadings her statement to police was read. She said that after she shot her sleeping husband in the back, instantly severing his spine, obliterating his stomach and leaving his shredded internal organs to soak into the sheets, she told him those two magic words “I’m sorry.”

Yes, Mary, you are sorry.

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