What is Your Apology Language?

 Sienna's graduation day from Kindergarten

“I hear you, but I don’t know what you said . . .”

That was the response from 5-year-old granddaughter Sienna after I had given her and her two older siblings three things to remember about going to the pool that day. When I asked them each to repeat back to me what I said, Sienna couldn’t remember. Finally, she cried out the above statement.

An “ah ha” moment for me.

Flashing before my eyes were all the frustrated conversations I had had with my husband when he couldn’t remember something I had said. I would say, “You don’t listen to me.” To which he would respond, “I am listening to you. I hear you.” There we would be at a standstill . . . . if he heard me, why didn’t he know what I said?

Then little Sienna put it all in perspective—I wasn’t speaking his or her “language.” I wasn’t saying things in a way that resonated with them, so they had no idea what I said.

5 Love Languages

As I’ve said in earlier posts, Dr. Gary Chapman, author of the bestseller 5 Love Languages, was our speaker for the Love Song Couples Getaway. You are probably familiar with his conclusions that we all have a love language and we typically love others in the “language” that speaks to us. They are:
1. Words of affirmation
2. Gifts
3. Acts of service
4. Quality time
5. Physical touch

He commented that usually a husband and wife have different love languages or “dialects,” and it’s important we learn to speak the language of our spouse. My love language is acts of service, and my husband’s is physical touch. So if I hold his hand while we’re walking somewhere or when we’re sitting next to each other, he feels loved and happy. If he sees things that need fixing around the house and fixes them without me asking or reminding him, I feel loved and cherished.

Interestingly, our children and teenagers all have a love language too, and it’s vital that parents learn what makes their children feel loved. Not speaking their love language can lead to a rebellious teen.

For more information, and to take a test to determine your love language, go to Dr. Chapman’s website.

5 Apology Languages

New to me was Dr. Chapman’s discovery that people apologize five basic ways. We all have an “apology language” which makes us feel the apology is sincere. If you don’t apologize in the language that speaks to me, there’s a good chance I’ll have trouble believing that you really mean it.

Here they are:
1. Expressing regret: “I’m sorry that I . . . .” Note that just saying, “I’m sorry” is not enough. These people need to hear what you are sorry for, and for goodness sake, don’t follow it with “but . . . .”
2. Accepting responsibility: “I was wrong . . . .”
3. Offering to make restitution: “What can I do to make this right?”
4. Genuinely repenting or desire to change: “I don’t like what I just did. I don’t want it to keep happening.”
5. Requesting forgiveness: “Will you forgive me?” If you want to communicate a sincere apology that the other person receives well, you have to learn the other person’s apology language.

What is Your Apology Language?

If you don’t know what speaks to you as a sincere apology allowing you to forgive, Dr. Chapman said to ask yourself these three questions:
1. When I apologize, what do I typically say or do?
2. What hurts me most deeply about this situation? Why am I having trouble forgiving? This person needs #4, a repentance apology because they feel like someone is saying just they’re sorry, but keep on offending.
3. What could they say, or do, that would make it easier for me to forgive them?

If You’re Married . . .

Pastor Rick on couples forgivingPastor Rick Warren at Saddleback Church

In my Bible study, Face-to-Face with Euodia and Syntyche: From Conflict to Community, I discuss forgiveness myths that often keep us from receiving the peace that comes from forgiving someone, whether or not they apologize.



Beach Baptisms and More . . .

In last week’s blog, I shared the amazing vacation that Dave and I took with the Love Song Couples Getaway—our second vacation with this God-centered group. Read in two earlier blogs how we discovered this group and about our trips to Maui and the Bahamas. Both of these vacations overflowed with fun and friendships, but we also had great worship and Christian teaching that challenged us to strengthen our marriages and our walk with the Lord. On both trips, there was an invitation to accept Jesus as your Savior or rededicate your life, followed by beach baptisms.

On the beaches of Maui, 87 people, including a young boy passing by, were baptized in the ocean and 39 people were baptized in the Bahama’s ocean. What a celebration that was and an amazing memory for all those who experienced the joy of making a public statement of faith and for those of us who prayed for them and cheered them on.

Chad and Andrea Burnell  (Idaho Falls} being baptized by Pastor Jim Wright in the Bahamas


More new friends: Holly and Bob Isenberger (WY) Jackie and Steve Riley (WA) and Dave and me celebrating with Chad and Andrea after their beach baptism


Why Be Baptized?

Baptism is an outward expression of an inward change of heart when we accept Jesus as our personal Savior. We believe that Jesus is who He said He was—the Son of God who died to bear our sins so that we might have eternal life. We receive salvation by admitting we have sinned, asking for the Lord’s forgiveness, and believing that Jesus Christ died for our sins and arose three days later to offer eternal life with Him to those who believe:

If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.  For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. Romans 10:9-10

Jesus said there was no other way. We cannot work our way into Heaven with good deeds and someone else cannot make the decision for us—not our parents, our spouses, our friends, or our church—it’s our personal decision. Only we can determine whether we believe in Jesus, and we need to be old enough to understand and acknowledge what it means to make Jesus Lord of our life.

Jesus’ baptism by John the Baptist symbolized what Jesus was soon going to do for us on the cross—dying, being buried three days, and then rising again. Immersion water baptism of a person who has accepted Christ as their Savior, symbolizes dying with Christ to their old sinful life and rising up out of the water a new person in Christ.

As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him.” Matthew 3:16

The baptism itself does not save us or make us Christians, just as wearing a wedding ring doesn’t make us married. The wedding ring shows the world we’re united with and committed to another person, so baptism tells the world we’re united with and committed to Christ.

Baptism is an expression of faith. You must be able to hear, understand, and reason. A christening or infant baptism is a choice made by the parents; a profession of faith baptism can only be made by someone old enough to make decisions for themselves. Peter explained at Pentecost,

“Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” Acts 2:38

There is a progression—we hear, believe, repent of our sins and ask for forgiveness, then publicly profess our faith through baptism, and receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

My Daughter and Granddaughter’s Baptism

In Praying for Your Prodigal Daughter, I talk about praying and fasting that my daughter Kim would want to be baptized after she accepted Jesus as her Savior. My husband Dave and I had the blessing of baptizing Kim and her fiancé Toby two weeks before their wedding. I said at the time, “You give your child their first birth, but what a joy to be part of her being born again in Christ and wanting the world to know!”

The day after we returned home from our Love Song Couples Getaway this year, my 8 year-old granddaughter, Katelyn, was baptized. Katelyn accepted Christ as her Savior last year at our churches VBS, and this year she was ready to be baptized. She’s been attending AWANA’s for three years and Sunday School on Sundays. Her parents felt she was now old enough to understand her decision to follow Christ and they had the honor of baptizing their daughter. Following is the precious video of Katelyn’s baptism—

Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:19-20



Love Song Couples Getaway–Trip Two

Anna and Jason Huff Jerome


“We met so many great couples, created a closer bond with two couples – adding to several from last year. For us… It’s renewing, rejuvenating, rewarding, re-energizing in all levels. We love these trips.”—Rachelle Souza, after attending several Love Song Couples Getaways

If you follow me through my newsletters, Facebook, and blogs, you know that my husband Dave and I went on our first Love Song Couples Getaway last year in Maui. You might enjoy reading the blog I wrote about what led us to go on this amazing trip and the blessing it was to us as a Christian couple. I also wrote blog posts describing “The Wonders of Prayerful Handholding” describing how our holding hands to pray while on the trip led to making new friends, “God We Need Friends,” many of which we’ve kept in contact with even though they live in different states!

Trip Two–2014

The last night of the Maui getaway 2013, they announced the Bahamas as an addition to their 2014 trips. Dave was out of his seat signing us up, and we’ve been budgeting and saving all year.

Well, we just returned from yet another amazing Love Song Couples Getaway encounter with each other and with God in the Bahamas! Again, we made new friends from all over the USA, even met couples from Idaho, and renewed friendships from last year.

Dr. Gary Chapman, author of The 5 Love Languages, was our keynote speaker, and if you ever get a chance to hear him in person, he’s an awesome communicator  . . . and funny. His messages were biblical and practical. He shared with us how his early years of marriage were not as blissful as he had anticipated and how their differences almost split them apart until he learned three key questions:
1. Honey, what can I do to help you?

2. How can I make your life easier?

3. How could I be a better husband (wife)?

When Dr. and Mrs. Chapman learned how to serve each other, their marriage soared. We had the pleasure of also meeting the delightful Mrs. Chapman, who accompanied her husband on the trip.

Dr. Chapman talked about the 5 Love Languages, but he also told us about the 5 Apology Languages, Dealing Effectively with Our Failures, Learning to Forgive, and The Grace of Anger. Every topic was applicable to your marriage or any relationship.

Me with Dr. Gary Chapman

Magnificent Worship

Mac Powell of Third Day, Brandon Heath, and John Micah led our worship time and performed concerts that had us on our feet singing and pleading for more, while they also shared parts of their lives with us. They sang to us on the beaches of Paradise Island as the sun rose over the ocean, during a Blue Lagoon beach outing, under the stars during sunset, in a restaurant after a sunset catamaran cruise, and in the ballrooms of the Atlantis Hotel. Their powerful messages, voices, and instruments flooded the heavenlies above Paradise Island in the Bahamas.

Brandon HeathMorning Worship with Brandon Heath

Just Kids Again

The Atlantis has the most elaborate array of water slides and adventures in the world. Hubby Dave and I relaxed on the Lazy River floats; and yes, we ventured onto a double tube scary slide that switch backed quickly through a dark tunnel and spit us out under a shark tank! Once was enough for that one!

Hubby and me on the ferry to a beach day at the Blue Lagoon

We renewed our friendships with Calvin and Lisa from Ohio, Karen and Jim from North Carolina, and Ron and Janelle from Illinois—couples we met last year in Maui—and had a great time meeting and making new friends from all over. The Atlantis is such a huge property, if we encountered a couple more than once, we knew it was a divine appointment. We’ll keep in touch with many of the couples we met.

Lisa and Calvin

Ron and Janelle from Illinois

Return to Maui…

Last year in Maui, we made some dear Southern California friends who opted to go back to Maui this year. We’ve been seeing pictures all week on Facebook from that Hawaiian paradise where they also enjoyed Gary Chapman, along with Pastor Greg Laurie, Bart Miller of Mercy Me, Matt Hammitt of Sanctus Real, and Leeland. Here they are having fun and fellowship in Maui . . .

Photo: Davis isn't too old to ride on the handle bars!  But it does take the rest of us to hold him up there!

What’s My Message?

Yes, we had great fun and relaxation, but both years our vacation with The Love Song Couples Getaway has also been a time of refreshment for our own ministry and marriage, as well as an opportunity to share a little glimpse of heaven with other believing couples.

If you’re married, I would encourage you to getaway to a couple’s retreat that fits your budget and schedule…well you might have to stretch both…but your marriage is the earthly replica of Christ’s relationship with the church. Dave and I are now on a fixed income and we sacrificed to make an investment in our marriage and spiritual walk to go on these trips. The sacrifice was nothing in comparison with the blessings we received.

If you’re single, find a spiritual retreat or conference to getaway from the franticness of life and spend time with fellow believers and the Lord. Is your church having a retreat or conference or is one coming to your town? Go!

Pastor Jim Wright of Mountain Church Medford, Oregon, was another speaker at our Bahamas and Maui Getaways, and he challenged us to ask ourselves:

 “Do you live with a sense of divine destiny?”

Next to his following comment, I wrote the word Mentoring:

“Learn from the experience of others. You don’t have to learn everything the hard way. Only God can give victory! Choose to remind each other that we are totally dependent on Jesus to live life to its fullest, not just exist.”

Go for it! Live life to the fullest in Christ and help others learn to do the same.

“The trip may end, but the friendships we made with you all continues! That’s the biggest blessing of these trips!” —Vanessa Garcia speaking of friendships we all made on our first Love Song Couples Getaway to Maui

If you missed last Monday’s Love Your Body blog, I wrote about how to eat healthy while on vacation. Next Monday, I’ll share more Love Song Couples Getaway pictures of beach baptisms and the story of my granddaughter’s baptism.