I’ve just seen the famous motto of the movie “Love Story” on a church notice board, saying “Love means never having to say you’re sorry”.
No doubt the purpose of the church is good – namely that everyone, no matter how sinful, is welcome there, because of God’s love for all. But surely what the slogan says is just bad psychology and bad theology.
One of the hardest things we have to do in our lives is to pronounce the words “I’m sorry” ,in order to mend a relationship that is broken. And yet sometimes it is the only way to restore that relationship. And the funny thing is, that sometimes it is the injured party, the one who has been wronged, who makes the effort and says “I’m sorry” - because he or she is the stronger person.
And I don’t think it is silly or blasphemous to see in the Cross of Christ God’s way of saying “I’m sorry”. Not that there was anything for God to apologize for. It was he who had been wronged, he who had been hurt. It was man who had broken the relationship. But because God was the stronger, it was he who humbled himself and (with all the pain that that involves) said “I’m sorry”.
Love doesn’t mean never having to say you’re sorry. Love gives us the courage and the ability to reach out eagerly wherever there are broken hearts and to say in the power of God’s love: “I’m sorry”