When someone fails or makes a mistake, there are two ways to respond. One will make a relationship. One will break a relationship.
Why did you do that?...
What were you thinking?
Didn't you know that would happen?
What's wrong with you?
You will never change.
You're just like __________.
You are so __________.
You are going to have to live with it.
I told you so...you should have listened to me.
You make me so mad!
I am sorry that happened to you.
I know that hurts.
I know how you feel, I've done that before.
I know you are frustrated...I would be too.
I will help you.
I'm here for you.
I forgive you.
We are going to get through this together.
It's okay...No big deal...No problem...it's not the end of the world.
I love you.
Every time someone fails, a spouse, a child, a friend, a co-worker, etc...we have a choice to make concerning how we respond. If we respond with law, our relationships will gradually be torn down. If we respond in grace, our relationships will gradually be built up. Since we are not under law, but under grace, in our relationship with God, let's not put people under law in our relationships with them.
This week, start responding to those who fail with grace (unmerited kindness) and watch your relationships gradually be built up and become stronger.
"Be kind and compassionate toward each other, having grace upon each other, just as God in Christ had grace on you."
*Note: Most translations use the word forgive in the verse above rather than grace. However, the Greek word used is from the root word charis, which is the Greek word for grace.