Regret or Repentence

It happens every day….another public figure is trying to do “damage control.”  Today it is veteran NBC newsman Brian Williams.

It was 2003 and Williams was riding in a helicopter in Iraq.  The helicopter in front of his took a hit from enemy fire.  Over the years since, Williams said to some people that his copter was hit by enemy fire but now we learn the truth–Williams was about an hour behind the attacked copter.  He was never in danger.

Williams is a newsman and his whole career rests on his credibility, the honesty we feel about him as he reports the news, the facts.  Yet when the flight engineer on the crew of William’s copter says “It felt like a personal experience that someone else wanted to participate in and didn’t deserve to participate in;” that sounds problematic.

Where does he go from here?

Probably there is a publicist working with him right now trying to do “damage control.”

He’s caught in a lie.

He has apologized.  He did that on Wednesday night on the Nightly News.

Pastor Idleman quotes Susan Wise Bauer author of the book The Art of the Public Grovel:  “An apology is an expression of regret.  I am sorry.  A confession is admission of fault:  I am sorry because I did wrong.  I sinned.”

Now most of us don’t have the high profile career of Brian Williams but do we have his problems?  Sure we do.  Often we have an “awakening” that things are wrong in our lives and we regret that things have turned out the way they have but we are not really ready to repent.  We just have the regret.  We want to engage in damage control. Mr. Williams has highly paid advisors to help him and after a story becomes news, he has to figure out some way to respond.  Our sins are usually not public so what do we do?  We try to deceive others.  We try to put on a “righteous face.”    We “act” as if nothing has happened.

It has.

Pastor Idleman says the next step is crucial for all of us who have sinned.

“I am sorry because I did wrong.  I sinned.”

Repentence:  what so many people just don’t want to do.

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