Maybe you've seen the commercials.
The ones where someone does something terribly wrong like throws a game controller through a television, gets involved in a bank robbery, or makes a fool of himself at a regal party? Then there's usually some really awkward tension, everyone's looking at each other all funny, and then some super suave voice from out of nowhere and says, "Wanna get away?"
As a communication nerd, these commercials are works of genius; yes they're funny, but moreover they tap into a feeling that everyone has experienced at some point or other and then provide their product (Southwest, in this case) as a solution. A wrong decision was made, something stupid was said, someone gets hurt, and it feels like the only way to escape the awkward tension and pain is to...well...literally get away from all of it.
I was thinking about it this morning, and if I had a dollar for every time someone wished that they could have a reset button for life, I'm pretty dang positive that I'd be the wealthiest man on the planet.
Ugh, wouldn't it be so nice if life worked like that? (Both the reset button and me being extraordinarily wealthy?)
I for one definitely do.
I can't tell you how many times I've just flat out messed up and then found myself in a situation where I'd purchase a plane ticket on an empty bank account just to escape. Relationships gone awry, hurtful words blindly hurled over the fence via text, foolish actions that just make my life and yours way more complicated...the list goes on and on.
To my dismay and the great disappointment of every soul who's ever messed up, however, life doesn't work like that. As great as it would be, there are no glaring red reset buttons that you can put your fist through when something goes wrong. And if escaping problems were as easy as booking a cheap plane flight, then I think the world would need bigger planes.
So what are we supposed to do when we just wanna get away?
How are we supposed to push through those situations where we would go to the moon and back to take back something we said or did?
The answer is nowhere as easy as buying a plane ticket or punching a button. In fact, I hate the answer I'm about to give because at the end of the day it is a glaring flaw in my own character.
I propose that the answer is humility.
Humility to own the situation. Humility to say that I'm wrong. Humility to admit I really messed up. Humility to lay my heart open and say that I'm truly sorry. Humility to plead for forgiveness...or at least the humility to lay my apology down on the doorstep in prayer that it will be received the next time the door is opened. Humility to hand the situation over to the other person, giving them the high-ground.
Humility is the only way that life can move on when we are in situations where things aren't right. The alternative is to stick to your guns, act like nothing is wrong, pile on more words of hurt or anger, and be indifferent to the situation. This always works (said no one ever).
I close friend of mine called me out on this this morning. There were feelings that had been disregarded, actions I had taken that were absolutely inappropriate, and an apology that, in my pride, had been totally glossed over. It kills me to say that my actions may have cost me a dear friendship. Amends were made, but in this situation things can't go back to the way they were and it grieves my heart.
I pray that if you're in the same spot, if there's something that needs to be made right, that you'll humble yourself and work to fix the situation. Then, when you're in a situation where you just wanna get away, you'll be able to say, "No, I need to get humble."
"If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all." Romans 12:18