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The Beautiful Apology

Apology Servanthood Listening

Source: “Tokyo train company apologizes for 20-second-early departure,” By Casey Baseel, Sora News 24, Nov. 16

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-12-13

Scripture: James 1:19 ; Mark 10:45

Author: Illustration Exchange


Casey Baseel, for Sora News 24, reports: 

Japanese trains are awesome for a number of reasons, not the least of which is how amazingly punctual they are. But on Tuesday, a train on the Tokyo-area Metropolitan Intercity Railway Company’s Tsukuba Express line failed to stick to its timetable.

The line connects Akihabara in Tokyo with Tsukuba in Ibaraki Prefecture, and on weekday mornings there’s supposed to be a northbound train that leaves Minami Nagareyama Station at 9:44 a.m. However, the train instead left at 9:43:40, 20 seconds earlier than it’s supposed to.

Before the day was done, the Tsukuba Express management issued an official apology, posted to the company’s website.

The statement reads:

"On November 14, at approximately 9:44 a.m., a northbound Metropolitan Intercity Railway Company (main office in Tokyo, Chiyoda Ward, President & CEO Koichi Yugi) train left Minami Nagareyama Station roughly 20 seconds earlier than the time indicated on the timetable. We deeply apologize for the severe inconvenience imposed upon our customers."

... [T]he fact that Japanese companies care so much about customer satisfaction, consistently try to look at things from the end-user’s point of view, and are willing to offer a sincere apology even for understandable inconveniences is, really, one of the most beautiful parts of Japanese society, 


How far afield do you have to stray before you stop to say, “I’m sorry?”  In the West, we are quick to make excuses and slow to consider the other person's point of view.  Indeed, a sincere apology for an understandable inconvenience is a beautiful thing.  It shows that we are looking at things first and foremost with an attitude of service.

Be slow to blame but quick to say, “My bad.”

“My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry” (James 1:19). 

The Apology Note Generator

Apology Sincerity Reconciliation

Source: "Mark's Apology Note Generator"

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2014-06-01

Scripture: Psalms 51:16

Author: Illustration Exchange


Mark Robert Allen is a self-professed, carefree, take life on his own terms kind of guy. "I never go anywhere without a camera. I drink to get drunk. Comfortable with technology, but not a geek. Write for the satisfaction, not the story. Take people's advice, but careful of their opinions."

"I was a little punk when I was growing up," he admits on his website, "and was always getting into trouble here and there. Now I'm older, I'm wiser, smarter and have become better at not getting caught."

"If you're not as good at getting out of trouble and stern talkings to," he suggests, "you might want to check out the apology note generator."

From there, one could supposedly click a link to a series of form letters and drop-down menus with a variety of canned apology phrases and sentiments--a veritable plethora of fill-in-the-blank "I'm sorry" notes.

"Love, marriage and relationships can be difficult," he says. "Sometimes, all it takes is an apology. I've resorted to using this simple tool for all my butt-kissing needs." 


So touching, so heartfelt, right?

Well, perhaps as testament to his fatally flawed reasoning, the link to his apology note generator no longer works. Just like Mr. Allen's approach to saying he's sorry, It's broken.

Reaching out for reconciliation with insincerity in one's heart might take the heat off the situation, but it does nothing for the soul.  So far as God is concerned, it's nothing more than a dead link.

"You do not desire a sacrifice, or I would offer one. You do not want a burnt offering. The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit. You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God" (Psalm 51:16-17, NLT). 

Apology Helps Cut the Cost of Medical Lawsuit Liability

Apology Justification (Positional) Sincerity

Source: "Doctors' New Tool To Fight Lawsuits: Saying 'I'm Sorry': Malpractice Insurers Find Owning Up to Errors Soothes Patient Anger" by Rachel Zimmerman, staff reporter, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL, published May 18, 2004.

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2014-06-01

Scripture: 1 John 1:8 ; Proverbs 28:13

Author: Rachel Zimmerman / Illustration Exchange


A misplaced needle during the administration of anesthesia turned Linda Kenney's routine ankle surgery into a fight for her life. Her heart stopped and doctors had to split her chest open to restart it. She and her family immediately pursued an aggressive law suit to "flatten" the anesthesiologist at fault.

That lawsuit never made it to court, however, due to the sincere apology of the doctor. He wrote her a letter and then met with her personally to confess his fault and to tell her how "deeply saddened" he was that she had suffered at his hand. "I found out he was a real person," Ms. Kenney says. "He made an effort to seek me out and say he was sorry I suffered." Ms. Kenney dropped the suit.

"Insurers and hospital lawyers have long discouraged doctors from apologizing to harmed patients for fear that such apologies might fuel lawsuits," reported THE WALL STREET JOURNAL (May '04):

The rule has always been "not to talk about the events to anybody," says Dr. Van Pelt. "Even a passing comment can be subpoenaed."

But with malpractice premiums soaring and a national patients' rights movement pushing for full disclosure of medical errors, the industry is rethinking the traditional approach known as "defend and deny." Stories such as Ms. Kenney's are persuading a growing number of hospitals, doctors and insurers that apologies may end up saving some of the huge sums paid out to settle disputes over medical care.

Since 2001, prominent institutions from Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston to Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore have made it a policy to urge their doctors to own up to mistakes and apologize. Consultants are increasingly in demand for seminars on how best to deliver lawsuit-deflecting apologies. Two states, Colorado and Oregon, have passed laws specifically saying an apology can't be used against a doctor in court.

At some medical schools, including Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in Nashville, Tenn., courses in communicating errors and apologizing are now mandatory for medical students and residents. …

Nothing is more effective in reducing liability than "an authentically offered apology," says Colorado surgeon Michael Woods, who teaches seminars for doctors and malpractice insurers on the importance of apologizing.

Some hospitals report that their expenses related to lawsuits and claims have declined as much as 30% since instituting a "policy of apology."


There is another court of law that doesn't use our apologies against us. It's the court of Heaven where those who have sincerely confessed their guilt are then declared innocent. If those who face litigation can't afford not to own up to their mistakes and make sincere apology, so much more those who face the throne of God.

"If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness" (1 John 1:8-9).

"Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy" (Proverbs 28:13).

Edith Bunker's Secret to a Happy Marriage

Apology Marriage Repentance

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2014-03-03

Scripture: Revelation 3:19

Author: Series Writers

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Man's Deepest Need

Forgiveness Restoration Apology

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2013-02-16

Scripture: Unknown

Author: Horace Bushnell

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An Apology Is Better Late Than Never

Apology Guilt Forgiveness

Contributed By: Pat Sage | Date Posted: 2012-02-01

Author: Andy McMillan

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Why Don't Men Apologize?

Marriage Apology Relationships

Contributed By: | Date Posted: 2011-06-11

Author: Faith Dillon

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Go Ahead, Admit It Already!

Apology Persecution Humility

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2010-08-22

Scripture: James 5:16

Author: Illustration Exchange

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Getting Through The Security Gate

Salvation Confession Sin

Contributed By: Corey Sawyers | Date Posted: 2019-08-11

Scripture: Revelation 21:27 ; 1 John 1:9

Author: Corey Sawyers

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The Peril Of "Covering Up"

Sin Confession Spiritual Health

Contributed By: Neal Pollard | Date Posted: 2018-12-31

Scripture: Isaiah 29:15 ; Numbers 32:23

Author: Neal Pollard

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