How to Reconcile with an Offended Person
What do we do when someone else feels wronged by us?
Let’s turn to the words of Jesus for some insight:
“Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.”
Matthew 5:24 NKJV
Jesus says when we remember that someone is offended with us, we should make it top priority to find them and seek reconciliation. We act with urgency for the other person’s sake so we can be a catalyst to help them out of the offense. Even if we are not offended with them, the love of God does not let someone remain angry without attempting to reach out and restore.
Whatever the cause, an offended person’s understanding has been darkened. We must be sensitive to the fact that they believe with their whole heart they have been wronged.
No matter why they feel this way, we must be willing to humble ourselves and apologize.
Therefore let us pursue the things which make for peace and the things by which one may edify another.
Romans 14:19 NKJV
This verse shows us how to approach a person we have offended. We are to pursue peace through humility at the expense of our pride. This is the only way to see true reconciliation.
Do you need to seek restoration in a relationship? This can be difficult, and it may seem easier to ignore the situation.
But remember Jesus’s words:
“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.” -Matthew 5:9 NKJV
Jesus did not say, “Blessed are the peacekeepers.” A peacekeeper avoids confrontation at all costs to maintain peace, even at the risk of compromising truth. But the peace they maintain is not true peace, and it will not last.
By contrast, a peacemaker will go to a person in love and confront, bringing truth so the resulting reconciliation will endure. They will not maintain an artificial, superficial relationship. They refuse to hide offense with a political smile. They desire openness and truth, and they make peace with a bold love that cannot fail.
God does this with us. He is not willing that any should perish, but He does not compromise truth for a relationship.
He seeks reconciliation with true commitment, not on superficial terms. This develops a bond of love no evil can sever. God has laid His life down for us. We can only do likewise for each other.
Today, ask the Holy Spirit to remind you of anyone who may feel wronged by you. Whether the offense is real or perceived, you can take the first step toward restoration. Ask God for the grace to approach this person in humility and love.
Remember that you are seeking reconciliation for their benefit, not your own. By doing this you can seal the victory. You can win over your brother or sister (see Matthew 18:15). This is well pleasing in the sight of God!