Leadership and Forgiveness, Part 2

This is a guest post by Andy Andrews, one of my dearest friends. He is also the author of the bestselling book, The Traveler’s Gift, and recently published The Heart Mender: A Story of Second Chances.

If you’re in leadership, the decision to forgive or seek forgiveness can seem like an afterthought, something necessary to smooth over awkward or rough patches so you can get back to business. This, says Andy Andrews, is a fatal underestimation. In Part 2 of this two-part guest blog, Andy explores how the principle of forgiveness is already affecting you and your leadership. (You can read Part 1 here.)

If you want to connect with Andy, you can read his blog or follow him on Twitter. He is one of the most inspiring people I know.

The principle of forgiveness has been ingrained in our spiritual life, but as an everyday tool, it seems to have been discarded by leaders as a sign of weakness.

Man Asking Forgiveness of Woman - Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/AndreasKermann, Image #5416841

Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/AndreasKermann

Employers rarely seek forgiveness from their employees. Parents don’t seek forgiveness from their children. Politicians never seek it from their constituents; nor do athletes from their teams, coaches from their athletes, or teachers from their students.

We could go on and on, but the evidence is clear. The game of LIFE has a “reset button,” but it is not being used!

Occasionally, leaders approach me with an eye for a solution to a tragic rift. The “event” has often been discussed by committees, worked on by consultants, and has cost unimaginable sums of time and money. Sometimes the disaster refuses to die, and it goes on claiming victims who were not even around when the incident took place. Companies close, families break apart, and churches split.

Amazingly, all these events seem to have a single thing in common: if a leader was the person who caused all the trouble (pulled the switch, made the move, etc.), he or she tried to clean up the disaster and make everything “nice” without knowing the difference between a mistake and a choice. The gap between the two is monumental. Knowing the difference can save you a ton of heartache, trouble, and money.

A mistake is when you turn left instead of right and get lost in the woods, subsequently stumbling off a cliff and breaking an arm. But when your mother has warned you against going into forest and you do so anyway thinking that no one will ever know, any injury is the result of a conscious choice.

When a leader makes a mistake, a carefully worded, heartfelt apology is usually all that is needed to right the ship. We rationalize, “there but for the grace of God, go I,” and we grant our own grace to the person, take a deep breath, and start over with the knowledge that “they won’t make that mistake again.”

But when there’s trouble because of a choice, the only thing that can ever hope to repair the damage is a specific request for forgiveness.

Some leaders try to push a version of this into the charred landscape: “I am so sorry. I have apologized to my family and now I apologize to you. I can’t tell you how sorry I am.” As weeks and months pass, some become almost belligerent in their attempts to make things right. “How many times must I say that I am sorry?” they plead.

Yet these apologies never set things right. The leaders made bad choices, and the people floating in the wreckage left behind have the unsettled suspicion that, “You aren’t sorry. You’re just sorry that you got caught.”

Whether or not this dissatisfaction is acknowledged or even consciously understood, it remains a gaping wound that is often never healed. Parents who make wrong choices in front of their followers (children) and chalk them up as mistakes, throwing them away with casual apologies, know that those offenses can pile up in the life of a child and overflow into astonishing rebellion and disrespect.

Can you remember an instance in your life when someone lost the reins of leadership because of a choice he or she made? An inappropriate comment, an unwise association, even a bad attitude on display can fester into unintended and crippling consequences if the “reset button” is not pushed in time. Setting things right—actually asking for forgiveness—can be uncomfortable in the moment, but the effects of this simple action will astound you.

Nothing beats this:

“I am so sorry. I am ashamed. Will you forgive me?”

These humble words, when spoken honestly, can heal virtually any wound. I have watched in awe as leaders reclaimed their authority with the quiet impact of this single principle. By harnessing the strength offered by the principle of forgiveness, corporations have regained their stature and families have been made whole again.

As you spread this simple message, I urge you to enjoy being the bearer of good news.

Question: Who do you know that might benefit from having their reset button pushed?
As part of the promotion for Andy’s new book, I gave away 100 autographed copies to those who commented below. This is why people asked for the book in the comments below.
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  • http://intensedebate.com/people/success2you John Richardson

    Great post, Andy. How I wish some of our current leaders had the courage to express forgiveness the way Ronald Reagan did, while laying in a trauma ward after being shot by John Hinckley…

    "Getting shot hurts. Still my fear was growing because no matter how hard I tried to breathe it seemed I was getting less & less air. I focused on that tiled ceiling and I prayed. But I realized I couldn't ask for Gods help while at the same time I felt hatred for the mixed up young man who had shot me. Isn't that the meaning of the lost sheep? We are all Gods children and therefore equally beloved by him. I began to pray for his soul and that he would find his way back to the fold."

  • http://intensedebate.com/profiles/michaelmears michaelmears

    Two reasons… I am still working through actively forgiving my father that lives within a mile of my house yet have never met and I am also preaching through joseph's life wrapping up with forgiveness in four weeks.

  • http://themissionalcommunity.blogspot.com Trent Brown

    I would love a copy of the book. I love anything that can push me to the next level in my ministry, leadership, teaching, coaching and parenting

  • http://twitter.com/crittyjoy @crittyjoy

    This post made me cry. As someone who has been adrift in the wreckage of a parent's action and then refusal to even think of apologizing and asking forgiveness it spoke deeply to my heart. Even more I can see in myself at times where I may not want to ask for forgiveness because I have been bitter in unforgiveness. My dad could definitely use a reset button. A second chance. I too maybe need to learn to at times just let go and move forward and try to work in the relationship. I guess I need a reset button too. Thank you Mr Andrews for challenging my thoughts on leadership and forgiveness.

  • http://twitter.com/writeforareader @writeforareader

    Great post! I would love to have a copy of Andy's new book because I am a fairly new leader. Starting in August, it will be my 2nd year as the asst. principal in an elementary school. Last year I read Andy's book, The Noticer Project and it really helped to change my perspective. I'm hoping his new book will just add to that. Thanks for the giveaway!

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/christopherbmac christopherbmac

    Wow, great post Andy! I have personally witnessed the restoration power of forgiveness in the life of my senior pastor. By him asking for forgiveness for something that happened while he was pastoring another church several years ago. And also in forgiving a former pastor who was spreading rumours/hearsay and making personal attacks on him behind the scenes with anyone who would listen.

    The senior pastor made several attempts to clear the air with the other guy and set the record straight. He was very hurt by what transpired but rather than hold it against the other pastor he chose to forgive him. And he now uses that same man in a visitation ministry role and he/we just honoured him a few weeks ago. Two men restored through the act of forgiveness. It really is a greater story than I can write in a few lines.

    • http://www.AndyAndrews.com Andy Andrews


      Thanks for the example. There are so many of these that I hear every week that I am determined to spread this word. After all, how can we apply a principle that we don't fully understand? AA

  • Holly Schurter

    Asking for forgiveness seems counter-intuitive; it seems to be a way of undermining our own authority and credibility. Who wants to do that? Yet, as the mom of a large family, I learned that asking for forgiveness when I was careless or insensitive or just wrong was really a way of turning a difficult situation around. It was also a way of modeling faith, a way of living that allowed us to live together as a family in a satisfying way. Now that our kids have grown up, I've carried that lesson into my work as a volunteer, and found that it is a way of modeling faith that allows me to work with others in a satisfying, more effective way. It's still not easy; it's still a little scary; it's still the right thing to do.

    • http://www.AndyAndrews.com Andy Andrews

      Great comment Holly! I think that when we "push the reset button" with our children that the communication is not diminished during the teen years! Your kids are fortunate to have such a wise mother! AA

  • Mark

    Wow!!!! Great post! Humility is lacking is so many leadership circles and without this humility we cant seek true forgiveness. I appreciate your post very much. It is a great reminder of the impact my decisions as a father and church llay-eader can have both good and bad. It is also a great check for the posture (i.e. that of a servant or a master) in which I take before God and the people I lead(serve) as I seek forgiveness. I would love to share this with our Elder team. Thank you for your insightful words of wisdom.

  • Bad week

    I have several reasons why I would like a copy of this book, because I love Andy. Also, I am a leader and this has been a very tough week as a father, husband, etc.

    This week I must admit that I have been a poor leader in all areas. I really shouldn't get into them here, but I should apologize to the people who work in my departments, because I have been a grouch. I rarely stepped out of my office and one day after it was over, I don't think I said one word to any of them. Yes some of my attitude was from their actions, but I must separate the actions from the people. I have been in a leadership position for almost 20 years, so I know this.

    This week I found out some news about one of my people that was kept from me when I hired him. Now I must deal with that as well. It also woke up a very dark time in my past. I did find relief in that the person who caused that is in prison for life, but it brought up a few more questions. I left a bunch for your imagination there.

    Another issue this week. Sometimes we must take the high road even though it may make an attack worse. Sometimes you must forgive and not involve other leaders. I am going through a situation now that has gotten so big that I could bring others into it, but I have come to the conclusion that it is not worth it. They are community and business leaders themselves. They left this issue years ago.

  • http://www.newseason.us Gary Taylor

    Inspiriing convergence. Just this morning finished "Tribes" in time to hit the Net and find Michael's modeling tribal leadership in his blog. Both the concept and the modelling are timely as I begin the book writing process. I've done lots of leadership and lots of "tribing". That's because I'm at the "finishing well" stage, part of a traditional, grandfatherly generation. Reshaping my leadership and experience in to the new global net-world has been a consuming challenge for two weeks (aided immensely by Hyatt posts!!).

    This'll be a two-comment package; I just had to toss my thanks to Michael for his contribution to my new journey. I do have a seasoned elder's view of the core issue, public confession, repentence, and forgivenesss.

  • http://generationalfathering.com Gary Taylor

    So, I'm inspired by and connected to this Hyatt guy. "Tribe" leaders breed leaders, says Godin.

    Comes along Andy and Mike's passionate summary. I can attest here to clarion value of a simple, deep offer of forgiveness in business and ministry (in the latter, it would seem an easier setting: it is not). Clue: it begins in family. With your spouse and children, do you admit your flawed character, seek forgivess (perhaps "again") and repent?

    Did I say "flawed character" and not "mistake"? How often "we all make mistakes" is the mantra thrown over politicians and celebrities by the media that substitutes for the real issue, deeply flawed character.

    In organized ministry this venture in to true accountability and tranparency has a better platform (even if seldom built upon) and can be followed by prayer. In secular business, it can be a lifestyle testimony of that Utter Forgiveness. In family, it can make a life-long impact on those you care for most and can build in to the family legacy. "Mistakes" don't get us any such.

  • http://twitter.com/lovinglyyoursG @lovinglyyoursG

    I believe we all are leaders in some way in our lives from being a mother at home to a leader of a huge organization and need our "reset button pushed" in order to begin life afresh once again. I know I have!

    We all need to turn our attention to the PRESENT MOMENT. Have you truly let go of all your past, of all your tomorrows? You don’t need to carry heavy loads of anger, fear, regret and unforgiveness. All of these will weaken your body, bring darkness to your soul and ultimately crush your spirit. LET IT GO! EMBRACE with ENTHUSIASTIC PASSION – UNITY! It is okay to disagree but it is not okay to carry that disagreement. Remember this VERY MOMENT is PRECIOUS!

    So right now… close your eyes. LET GO of anything causing you pain, stress and anxiety. Right now… FORGIVE others and yourself. Now OPEN your EYES and HEART to a CLEAN slate! You are in this PRESENT MOMENT! Say, “It is ALL GOOD – I walk in FREEDOM – I am EMBRACING this MOMENT with ENTHUSIASTIC JOY! HALLELUJAH! It's a new DAY – a new LIFE – a new MOMENT for me!" :-)

  • http://www.lifelivedbetter.org Ricky Lewis

    Wow I have seen this principle play out both ways in so many areas of my life. Between my dad who was a pastor and offended some people greatly but was unwilling to seek true forgiveness to elder's at my church that asked sincerely for forgiveness from the church body. These situation have shaped my desire to seek out forgiveness in my job and at home.

    As for the book here is why I need one. I run a faith-based non-profit that works with teenager parents who need to learn these kind of things so they can know how to parent differently. On a more personal note I am a parent of three and see often how I need to seek forgiveness from my kids and my wife for how I treat them. My goal would be to use this book in my own life but also pass it on with a strong recommendation to those I come in contact with who need these things spoken into their lives as well.

  • Patrick

    This is my post so i can have a chance of winning the free book. Love andy's work.

  • http://www.drescherteam.com Scott Drescher

    Watching Andy live, most recently in front of almost 1,000 fellow loan officers at a PrimeLending event, you can't help but feel his personal leadership glow. Andy starts by forgiving himself, as true forgiveness never comes without leaving guilt and pain behind. Many people simply don't admit the act, calling it a mistake, when in fact it was a concious decision to break the rules, break a trust, or worse. When it's time for them to be a leader, standing tall to be held accountable, they don't really ask for forgiveness of their action, but in fact are sorry that they got caught. BP is a perfect example of this. Thanks for sharing this and Andy, if you read this, thanks again for your leadership. We're all better for it.

  • Yvonne

    Andy Andrews is my favorite author. His books are interesting and thought provoking. I'm interested in The Heart Mender because I have been dealing with forgiveness issues in my family. He "speaks my language" and I believe, based on his other books, that this will give me insights that will help me think about these issues in a way that I can handle them. He is a master storyteller and I have grown as a result of reading his other books. To have an autographed copy of The Heart Mender would be wonderful!

  • Dorothy Banocy

    This post made me realize that 'I'm sorry' and 'will you forgive me' are very different. I can see in many aspects of life where it is necessary to say both AND mean it. Thanks Andy for your valuable insight on so many difficult subjects. I have become a better leader because of your thoughts!

    • http://www.AndyAndrews.com Andy Andrews

      Thanks Dorothy! The recognition of this difference made a huge DIFFERENCE in my life as well! AA

  • Eric Anderson

    I raised my kids (18 & 19) to always be truthful and honest. I also have taught them to say I’m sorry when they have hurt someone by their actions or words. Now that they are both adults and both will be in college this coming Fall I hope that they will continue to do that in their life. I say all that to say that I made a terrible mistake back in Feb. 2010. It was a mistake that almost cost me my family. Saying I’m sorry and please forgive has now become something I have had to put into place for myself. I don’t want to go into great details on this blog but I would be more than happy to share with you personally. I was raised to be honest & truthful in all areas of my life. I had done that until this past Feb. Not proud of it all but what is done is done and now I’m moving on. Five of the hardest words to say sometimes is “I’m sorry, please forgive me.” But they are the best healing words available to mankind if we will just use them. I hope you had a great July 4th weekend Michael.

  • Daphne Burson

    Andy, I first saw you speak several years ago at a Leadership QED session for the hospital that I work for. I was very inspired, you were the best ever (and since)! I immediately purchased your book for myself and my co-workers, who equally enjoyed. This past “Bosses” Day, one of my co-workers gave me The Noticer. I truly enjoyed the book and I always thought my husband was a puppy dog, but he read the book, corrected me and know I see the kitten in him :) If I’m not one of the 100, I’ll still get the book! P.S. you are hilarious, loved the interview!

  • Amanda

    Life makes you strong and asking for forgiveness makes you stronger. This past year I went thru a divorce after finding out my husband had been sleeping with my best friend. It was extremely hurtful but I was determined not to allow it to hurt my two small boys. I want my children to have nothing but positive words in thier life, not only about their dad but about friendship that can be destroyed but forgiven. I believe one of the greatest gifts I can give my children is by teaching them forgiveness. When I mess up and yell when I shouldn't or cuss when I get mad, I ask them for forgiveness. I want them to know that we all 'mess up' in life but asking for forgiveness and trueling meaning it, is what makes our foundation strong.
    I saw Andy at a Women of Faith conference earlier this year, when my life was dangling by a thread, his words uplifted me. I would be honored to read one of his books. Thank you for your consideration!

  • LSG

    The lesson of a "mistake" vs "choice" must be one I really need to be taught as this is the second time I've heard it within the last 1/2 hour. While driving in to work this morning I heard sports talk radio host and Christian, Jay Barker, discussing University of Georgia Athletic Director, Damon Evans and his recent DUI arrest and being with a 28-year old woman who wasn't his wife. Barker discussed that Evans kept apologizing for "his mistake," whereas he had actually made a conscious choice to take the actions he did. Barkers point was only an admission of this choice and another conscious choice to take decisive action with his own family would help Evans. A "life reset button" was never mentioned, but I wouldn't be surprised if Jay Barker had been reading Andy Andrews, both seem like men of intergrity and faith. Usually when God chooses to enlighten me about my own choices through this type of message repitition, I know I had better take action.

  • Mark Gabrick

    This is exactly what many of us need right now. In a world that seems upside-down, simple Bible-based logic heals so many wounds. It is only because our Saviour gave his life so that we might be forgiven, yet we do not feel confident in our faith to exercise this virtue.

  • LSG Part 2

    Unfortunately I know my wrong leadership choice which happened about a year ago. made some lame apologies to the people affected, but honestly may not have done that if I had not been called out on it. I need to meet with the five people affected and frankly discuss what I did and how I've worked on changing the past year. I need to make a conscious decision to hit the reset button and restablish a fruitful and open relationship with these coworkers. Thank you Andy Andrews and Michael Hyatt for helping me see this.

    • http://www.AndyAndrews.com Andy Andrews

      You got it LSG! Wait til you see the difference it makes! AND I love Jay Barker. I've never met him, but Roll Tide! AA

  • Michael Trammell

    As a production supervisor for over 30 years I have not always made the best choices when dealing with employees, but I have always cared about them and when I realise I have not made the best choice in dealing with a situation, have found that a heart-felt apology and admitting that I was wrong goes a long way in restoring that working relationship back to a good one.

  • Jeffrey

    I want to thank you for this timely message. My life seems to be at a crossroads with an impending divorce and reliving all hurtful memories from the past. I seem to be at a crossroads of questioning several areas of my life. This blog helped me to realize that seeking to restore relationships and requesting forgiveness demonstrates the epitomy of courage and truly removes the stains of shame and guilt. There can be no true sense of self, personal freedom, and genuine authenticity without seeking to bridge the pain with others. Thank you again for giving me this inspirational moment that can help me as I seek to find my way on the path of life.

  • http://www.c12group.com Tom Nolan

    Forgiveness is a strange fruit, in order to enjoy the amazing taste you MUST first give it away. True leaders SERVE others and wear the apron of humility, asking forgiveness is just another act of service, as is granting it unconditionally.

  • George Wilder

    Several Sundays ago, our guest preacher spoke out things that need to change and the things that are changeless, ie the Bible. He stated that we do not need to know anything new, we just need to be reminded of what we know. That, for me, is what Andy's books do. They tell us things we already know but in a fresh and different way. My favorite is the converstation between Booker T. Wahington and George Washingtton Carver about who gets the credit. We never know what effect our actions can have or what the ramifications can be.

  • http://joycebrown.com Joyce Brown

    I absolutely love this book – read it in one afternoon and evening. Cannot wait until it is made into a movie! The whole world needs this message about forgiveness – over and over again!

  • Dave Elliott

    Thank you for this excellent message. As a coach who works with both CEOs on Leadership and also with people on their personal relationships, you simply cannot underestimate to power of a sincere apology and a humble request for forgiveness.

  • Jason Keene

    I have recently made horrible mistakes that cost me my job and may cost my family. This article feels like it was written to me.

  • gary darnell

    I have all of Andy's other books. I use many of his stories and examples with my 9th grade current events class. I recommend his books to students who don't like to read. I know they will love his stories, and want more.

  • http://www.Elaine4Success.com Elaine Love

    "The Heart Mender" provides new perspective on the situations in our life. Learn to pay for your mistakes and heart aches once, not repeated forever. This book can change your life for the positive forever.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/bdeeley Brian Deeley

    Great post and so excited that Andy's new book is coming out.

    I absolutely identify with this and would love to dig deeper on this. One negative thing about forgiveness is the trend over the last 15 years of using the mantra "ask for forgiveness instead permission". Instead of promoting thoughtful decision-making, many manager will often just "roll the dice" knowing they have the "get out of jail card" that is an apology. For that reason, I would underscore the need to describe Andy's concept not just as "Forgiveness" but "Heartfelt Forgiveness" or "Sincere Forgiveness".

    I have to agree wholeheartedly with Andy's point about the astounding effects of an honest apology and would just add that honest apologies (especially in an organizational setting) are not just tremendous for reconciliation/healing, they are also highly productive.

  • http://www.kreilife.com Kelly Krei

    Great post; most folks these days would rather choose the easy road of making excuses for their actions rather than except responsibility for their choices. I t also refreshing to read ‘to ask forgiveness’ rather than beg for sorrow; I live knowing that I do not have the ability to always make the right choices or decisions, however I also know that I do have the ability to make right my bad choices or decisions with and through forgiveness.

    Happy Independence Day America.

  • Dee

    I have been so moved by Andy Andrews books, starting with my discovery, quite by accident, of THE NOTICER. That book changed my life and inspired me to share it with virtually every friend and acquaintance that I could. Now, with the publication of THE HEART MENDER, I find that Andy is taking me and us to a new level, the often overlooked but much needed level of true forgiveness.

    Having recently lost my husband, one of the things that I did while talking with him during his final days on this earth was to sincerely ask for his forgiveness for the hurts that I may have subjected to him during all of our years together. I thank God that we were afforded the time, knowing of his impending death, to mend the wounds.

    While I have attempted to practice this principle in my work life and management, I am not sure that I fully appreciated or followed the concept in my personal life until now.

    Since I may never have the opportunity to hear Andy in person, having a personally signed copy of his latest book brings me one step closer.

  • http://www.christinaburkerealtor.com Christina Burke

    I would love a copy of Andy's new book both for me and for my husband who is currently deployed for the 3rd time. My husband bought me Anyd's DVD about mastering the seven decisions along with the book and then my favorite The Time Travelers Gift…These have helped me cope with the trials of these deployments and to help me overcome my past! Andy Andrews puts it out there in the books in such a way that no one else can!

    My father was very abusive to me, my mom , and 3 sisters. I have struggled all these years not to be like him. I have to stop myself from yelling or screaming, I have to control my need to control or over power, and most of all I have to fight the urge to just storm out. This was normal for me for 20 years of my life and I have spent the last 12 years trying to erase that. I think I have done a good job, but I will never stop praying, and seeking guidance for fear that the old ways of my life will sneak up and take over!

  • http://www.christinaburkerealtor.com Christina Burke

    VEven though a reset button would be nice…I do not think I would reset my past as it has made me the strong person I am today! The idea behind this though makes me stop and look at a situation before I open my mouth to speak, so that I do not find myself wishing for a reset button after I have spoken.

    I now teach Sunday School to the 4-6yr olds at our church and I head up our Wednesday night youth program in my husbands absence teaching the teens! I need all the help and guidance I can get to teach these kids about the Lord and the trials of life in a way that they will understand and be able to grab hold of for future reference!

  • http://viewsfromtherough.wordpress.com/ Tim Dudley

    Not only do we need to ask for forgiveness in our lives but we need to offer it. I have seen and heard many people say they have forgiven such and such — then throw them under the bus. When you have truly forgiven someone you alow them to save face. This has become the plumb line in my life to measure if I have truly forgiven someone.

  • Clemil

    Excellent post! Love your books and seeing you present. Will see you in October in St. Paul! Forgiving is one of the hardest things you can set your mind and heart to do. This book will inspire me to hopefully do just that not only in my personal life but professionaly. As well as mentoring younger up and coming professionals in my company.

  • http://www.coached.com Ed Cerny

    Michael – I have always enjoyed reading Andy's books. The title is most interesting. We have 5 dogs. One day while walking a couple of the dogs our Lord gave me a new word – "dogful". Dogs demonstrate everyday their commitment to unconditional love. I need to be more dogful as a leader. My younger brother, Frank, comes to the front of my mind about "resetting" with him. I will write him today – he does not use the phone very much.

    Have a blessed 4th.

    Ed Cerny

  • Misty Vick

    I love listening to Andy and reading his books. I have read all of his books and they have been a great inspiration to me and my family as we have had to deal with a lot of loss in our family over the past few years. I have never found anyone who has touched my life in the way that Andy has through his books. The act of forgiveness has been hard for me in my life and I have with the help of Andy's books and post like these learned to apply forgiveness to my life. He is a great teacher and I would love an opportunity to have an autographed book from him.

  • http://www.TheHarmonTeam.us Gina Harmon

    I actually bought your new book for my husband for Father's Day. He was recently diagnosed with lung cancer and although we are believing for total and complete healing, it has forced us to look at the fragility of life and treasure every moment with each other and our loved ones. It's made us want to be in right and peaceful relationship our kids, family, and friends (past and present). We're peaceful people anyway, but this is such a simple (not necessarily easy) way that anyone could do, especially to bring healing in relationships. I'd like to get another copy for my kids so they can learn the principles taught at an earlier age and make a huge difference in their relationships, both personal and work related. Thanks for the book Andy!

    • http://www.AndyAndrews.com Andy Andrews

      Gina! Thanks for the kind words. I will definitely pray for your husband and family. AA

  • Jeffrey Verlander

    Obviously forgiveness should come easy for Christians, since we know that we have been forgiven. However our sinful nature and the evil one convince us that holding a grudge is the better way to handle the situation. I would love a copy of this book in order to help me to better understand the need for grace and forgiveness within the workplace. If I could learn this then the influence that I have on those that I lead would be even greater. God Bless!

  • Bron Schuetze

    I just finished reading both part 1 and2. My heart sank. We have had a situation at our office where leadership has been unable to ask for forgiveness in this way. I believe we could have saved not only an employee but attitutes of some of the other folks here. I thank Andy for making it so clear. I would like a copy of the book to give to the person in our company. I know that would make a true reguest for forgiveness possible.

  • http://www.facebook.com/valerieerwood Valerie Erwood

    I haven't purchased this book yet, but I read the contents under the name, "Island of Saints". As with every other book I've read of Andy's, I could not put it down until I finished it. I remember staying up all night to finish it! Absolutely hypnotizing!

    Thanks Andy!

    Valerie Erwood

  • http://LakeviewVeterinaryClinic.com Ray Ramirez

    The part that struck me the most is that "you are not sorry – you are just sorry you got caught". That is palpable in so many ways. Thinking of politicians, even if the press is trying to downplay the act, we can 'see' they are only sorry they were caught.

    They _do_ the same things that brought about the choice they made in the first place.

    In my own family life, I have tried to be involved with my children's life. For a period of time, the work took me away from home for full weeks at a time, and when I came home, I used my exhaustion as an excuse not to interact with my children for the few hours of a weekend I had before the 'grind' started over again on Monday.
    I have since changed job situations, but did my attitude change? – NO, so neither did my relationship with my children.
    Only in the past 3 months, as I realized that it was my attitude that was the problem, not the kids, or the situation, has my relationship changed.

    Too often I found myself applying these principals I would read from Andy and others (John Maxwell's books I love also) at work, but 'forgetting them' at home.

    That was dumb. Now I implement at home first, then at work!
    Thanks for another 'tool' the the toolbox of life.

  • Lu Burton

    Andy, I met you at the Curves Convention last year and haven't been the same! I have been practicing the seven decisions in my life as a business owner, mother, grandmother, sister, and friend. I feel as though it has been a spring cleaning of my "life's baggage." But, we are talking about life and its turns and bumps – recently my son (member of the "me" generation) downloaded some "old bad memories" on my doorstep and then happily went off sailing in the SF Bay. After not sleeping for days and feeling horrific about being a single mom raising her son without help from the sperm donor (who ran off with a sister-in-law when his son was 2 years old) , I received your email about "leaders and forgiveness." I read it carefully and then there it was – apologize and ask for forgiveness! I am looking forward to presenting this to my son as soon as he returns from his 3-day weekend boating in the delta over the 4th of July holiday! In the meantime, I will take a nap, and then get back to my Curves facility with a smile on my face! Merci for your inspiration.

    • http://www.AndyAndrews.com Andy Andrews

      Lu! You've got it! What a great gift for your son! AA

  • http://www.royersroundtopcafe.com bud royer

    Into the cafe charged Polly Hitt, Tuesday night of the 2009 fall antique week. She had no reservation but had a pleading look on her face…. asking if she could get a table for herself and three others. Polly, a sweet dear jewelry designer and antique dealer from Tyler, Texas who’s been eating with us several times a week during the Round Top antique show, twice a year, for some 15 years. The urgency on her face with the tone in her voice stopped me in my tracks as I was surrounded by a horde of customers.
    She quickly blurted out she had to warn me that two of them were the wild frenchmen from California that I had a major blow-up with in the middle of the dining room several years ago during one of the antique shows. She went on to tell me how she had been begging them during the last four shows over the past two years, to come back to the café and makeup with me. She told’m how I really wasn’t the gruff, mean hearted, guy they had previously had experienced. Actually, she told’m that I was a big, soft teddy bear….oh yeah!!! Tonight she was so excited that they finally gave into her and now they were waiting in the car to see if I would serve'em. To tell you the truth, I had forgotten about that night and the details of the encounter until she reminded me what happened.
    What happened was that Polly had made credit card guaranteed reservations for herself along with three other dealers of which two were these Frenchmen, Yves and Elyan. She, with one of her guests promptly arrives on time for the reservation for four. Picture this, we have 11 tables seating 40 customers at one time which during the antique show seat more than 60. That night we were packed to the gills, with people crammed around every table in the café and scores waiting on the front porch for their chance for a seat inside. When it came time to seat Polly, she informed me that two of her party of four, Yves and Elyan, hadn’t arrived yet since they had a last minute big sale in their booth but were on their way. So, the soft hearted teddy bear I am, acquiesced to going ahead and seating her party though it wasn’t complete. I knew better! Ten minutes later I was getting frustrated and in another 15 minutes was really frustrated, actually upset as I watched the two empty chairs at her table. Of course she was waiting to place her dinner order after her late guests had arrived. Very important to the success of any restaurant is to understand the concept of BIS or having a butt in every seat. One does not make any money if there is not a person sitting in that seat ordering food and enjoying themselves. REALITY REALLY IS PRETTY SIMPLE! I remind myself and sometimes a customer or two that this is not a ministry but a mission! Note how this scenario has a major impact on the service in the café, which is just as important as the quality of the food. What this
    does too the flow of the café is throw off those four seats for the rest of the night. Seats that were already committed to those that made resos through out the evening. When you multiply this by just a few seats it is like a stack of dominos all lined up! Couple this with the phone ringing every two minutes wanting to know if they could get in to eat. Along with folks constantly walking into the café asking how soon they could be seated for dinner. It is the midst of all this commotion, activity, and hustle that Yves and Elyan stroll into the café asking for Polly’s table, some 30 minutes late. I didn’t respond to very graciously, for sure not as a soft teddy bear but more like a bear with its nose stuck in a bee hive! I told them, in a loud and short statement, that they would have to eat and be out of the café in less than a 30 minutes since they were so late as I had folks committed to their seats….you can image the scene. I was quickly told in a very thick French accent that we are French and we don’t eat like that! And on top of that, we are in the restaurant business and would never treat their customers like that!!!! Needless to say, the two didn’t eat, storming out of the café with dear Polly being so embarrassed. Understandably for several years the two Frenchmen had not been within a 100 yards of the café’s front door, telling many others the story of this encounter, and for sure to never eat at the café…..(cont' in next post)

  • http://www.royersroundtopcafe.com bud royer

    (cont. from previous post)
    So back to Tuesday night of the recent show with Polly wanting to know if would let the two Frenchmen come back into the café. I immediately hugged her, thanking her for getting them to come and to get them out of the car as I had a table right then for the four of them. Once they were seated I approached the table asking them to please forgive me for my rudeness in how I handle them that night in the midst of all that was going on. I told the Frenchmen how I was so wrong and ashamed in my response to which he accepted my apology but were quick to tell in detail what had happened, exactly what I said, and how I said it. I realized that often the person that was wronged has a better recollection than the one that committed the offense. Anyway, I sat with them through out their meal being so grateful for Polly and for being allowed to rebuild the relationship and friendship. I tell you that I thanked Polly several times as we sat at the table. Thanking her for her advocacy, her belief in me, and for seeing through all my issues to see my heart. What a saint Polly is to me…..

    • http://www.AndyAndrews.com Andy Andrews

      Bud! Wow, what a story! I am proud of you and continue to be amazed at how folks can "clear the air" with the principle of forgiveness! AA

      • http://www.wordizm.com Lori Zwermann


        What an inspiring story – bless you for having the guts to share it with us. Wisdom is knowing what to do next; Skill is knowing how ot do it, and Virtue is doing it.

  • Earth Angel

    This article really touched me as well! I come from a very disfunctional home that injured all four of us children into adulthood. When we get together, we all remember the scars we bear. I have spent most of my life looking for my mother's approval, of course never receiving and never feeling good enough. How healing and freeing it would be for all of us kids to hear those simple, humble words, I am sorry, I am so ashamed, please forgive me. Thank you so much for this brave viewpoint on leadership and forgiveness! I cannot wait to read this book! I will read anything that is endorsed by Andy Andrews, one of my favorite authors.

  • Becky St. John

    Hi Michael,

    Thank you for your blog. I enjoy it very much! It occurred to me when I was reading today's message that sometimes we need to say those humble words to ourselves, then ask ourselves for forgiveness — in other words, hit our own reset button. We might then be better able to forgive others when called upon to do so.

  • dt007

    I am not writing this because I want a book. I'm writing it because I thoroughly beleive in the power of forgiveness and also because I love what Andy writes. I watched him for the first time at First Baptist Church in FWB and purchased the Traveler's Gift soon after. What an awesome book. I bought copies of that and the other books for my 21 year old and 18 year old sons and the spanish version to my wife who is from Panama. The power of Forgiveness is a bibilical principal that I for one have learned and do my best to follow. As I write, my wife and I are having huge issues and it is only through forgiveness that I know our marriage should survive. Though it has nothing to do with infidelity, I asked her to forgive me for anything wrong that I may have said and done in our life of now 14 years of knowing her and 12 years of marriage. I know that "if she does" (as I pray she will), our marriage will survive. I for one, have forgiven her for her words and actions towards me. This is how I know the power of forgiveness, what a weight off the shoulders it is to be able to forgive.

  • http://www.examiner.com/x-8081-Milwaukee-Christian-Living-Examiner Delores Liesner

    I’d like to win a copy of Andy Andrew’s book because I’m a writer who is inspired by what I read, and a firm believer that God allows life difficulties as stepping stones. Andy’s humble teachings lead me to allow God to touch others through submitting my ‘rights’ to God’s control. Unforgiveness and its resulting bitterness in our family led to spiritual bondage, either through an attitude of entitlement [asking God to fix others for more peace in my life] or the lie that the offender need to do what only God can do (forgive ourselves). Now that we've begun experiencing healing, my passion is putting on the character of Christ. The more I read from those like Andy who live that example, the better I’ll be able to live it and pass on that inspiration.

  • http://twitter.com/astjean @astjean

    "I am so sorry. I am ashamed. Will you forgive me." Such a simple sentiment but so hard to say! Why do humans have such a hard time with humility? I find it amazing how the hurt, the anger, the grudge of the incident can be nearly forgotten and most definitely forgiven if one just asks. It seems everyone wants to justify their wrong actions. The statement "I'm sorry, but . . ." does not ask for forgiveness. It actually adds salt to the wound. People should say they are sorry and stop! Don't justify. If you hurt or wronged someone, there is no justification! Just last week I was having some quiet time with God and I realized that I pray often and regularly but I rarely tell God that I am sorry for my specific wrong doings and ask for His forgiveness. What an aha . . .humility is difficult with others and with God. Admitting that I am wrong and asking for fogiveness is tough at that moment but oh, so sweet to the soul afterward.

  • Ralph

    Thank you for your post.

    We have been working hard within our family to "keep the reset button" pushed all of the time. We recently worked through a situation with our oldest son; he had "a character issue" show through one day during a baseball game. That night we spoke about it to him and he acknowledged the problem. We suggested that he speak directly with his teammates and coaches the next day, confessing the problem and asking for their forgiveness. Initially, he did not want to do so, but thought about it overnight. The next morning, just before the next game he asked to speak to the team and coaches privately. He confessed what he did with great thoughtfulness; even asking for the team and coaches to forgive him. My wife and I welled up with tears as we saw our oldest son take personal responsibility for his own actions.

    I know that it was difficult for him, but he took the first step toward doing the right thing (and his manhood) and allowing people to recognize Jesus work in his life. By the way, they did forgive him; he made a big impression on the team, and showed himself to be the leader I knew he could be.

    Thank You!!

    • http://www.AndyAndrews.com Andy Andrews

      Ralph! Awesome! You need to write about that!!!! AA

  • Tammy

    Not one of us can say we have never made a mistake. At some point we all need to ask someone for
    forgiveness or for that matter, be the graceful recipient of the same. When you try to cover up something
    it is always going to make matters worse. People living along the Gulf Coast are experiencing this
    very thing as we speak. Lets hope those involved have have the courage to ask for forgiveness an
    those who need to hear, find it in their heart to forgive.

  • Darrin Farley

    The Truth will set us Free…..that saying is so true in life. If only our leaders would step up to the plate and simply apologize and ask for forgiveness our world today would be a much better nation. Ignoring problems just makes them become larger and larger until they are out of hand. What a difference it would make if we all started living life by the Golden Rule…..Do unto others as you would have them do unto you…..Wow….our world would become a refreshing environment to live in. An idea so simple with so much power. A simple gesture of asking for forgiveness, telling the truth and doing the right thing.

  • http://unawareoftheobvious.blogspot.com/ Lena

    Honestly, my heart isn't whole and needs all the mending it can get, forgiveness does not come easily for me but I try. I think the book could help me grow as a person.

  • Carolyn Bryant

    My husband and I have been fans of Andy's since he did stand up comedy at Top of the Port with Brent Burns. I've heard him speak. We have CDs, DVDs and several of his books. I love the down to earth, easy to understand his way of expressing things that I feel. Andy truly has a God given talent. More power to him.

    After being wheel chair bound for over 10 years, my husband died a couple of years ago, but he was so inspired by Andy's words. Thank you so much.

    • http://www.AndyAndrews.com Andy Andrews

      Carolyn! Great to "hear" from you! I have great memories off all those times with Brent. Make sure you read The Noticer. Brent is in it!!! AA

  • http://intensedebate.com/profiles/hisjules HisJules

    I would love to have a copy of this book because just from readin these 2 posts I can tell that this is something I need to work on in my own family as well as in my roles as a leader both on the job and in our church! The part about how to ask for forgiveness spoke volumes to me about how I had handled a situation badly with my daughter! Thanks for sharing!

  • Danielle DeLonge

    This post was right on time for me. Just this morning, I left a voicemail for someone that I had made a business request of a few weeks ago, and was apologizing at having asked for such a big favor when I really hadn't taken the time to see if this is something she was interested in helping me with. Since it'd been weeks since I heard from her, I thought an apology was in order, as I had overstepped the bounds of our friendship. Looking over my notes from what I had written out to say to her, I noticed I had never asked for forgiveness. What a powerful concept…I'd love a copy of the book to learn more about how this concept applies in the world of business.

  • David Furse

    I find it interesting and instructive that the subtitle of the first publication of "The Heart Mender," "Island of Saints", was "A Story of the One Principle That Frees the Human Spirit." The subtitle "The Heart Mender"" is also interesting: "A Story Of Second Chances." Our spirits cannot be freed from the destructive effects of poor choices unless and until we forgive others, and ourselves, and humbly seek forgiveness from others for the harm that our choices have done in their lives. Without forgiveness, we miss out on the value of life's second chances.

  • http://drike.org Ike Reighard

    As a communicator I am always reading and searching for the stories that can inspire and impact the lives of others and no one can beat Andy Andrews for the best positive material in changing lives.
    I would love a copy of the book so I can share Andy's ideas with others!

  • Jenna

    Hearing about forgiveness in a completely new light in the AdvoCare leadership room totally opened my eyes! I was hit with lightning to realize that a person really does not need to ask for forgiveness or even deserve it to actually get it from me. And even the Bible doesn't suggest that a person deserve my forgiveness. Somehow I must have missed that in the past. Or not cared. And it's amazing to realize how much more free I am because of making the choice to forgive. It really hurt only me in the long run, not the person I couldn't forgive. Thanks for laying this out so simply, though it required some time to really sink in.

  • Candace

    First thank u Michael for having a Andy guest.

    Second, thank u Andy for making that simple yet weighty difference between a mistake and a choice. The resolution isn’t situational “Well if you only knew my [unique] situation………….., then you would think differently.” Your resolution covers alllll situations and those that argue it simply don’t want to do it.


    Enter text right here!I would like a copy of this book for my daughter (I['ll readt it first though) Natalie is going through a very difficult time in her marriage. Her husband has been unfaithful and they have an 11 month old daughter. Forgiveness is required in their situation!

    As for why I want to read this book, isn't this what we learn from God? So, anything that helps (blesses) my life is welcomed.


    Enter text right here!I would like a copy of this book for my daughter (I['ll readt it first though) Natalie is going through a very difficult time in her marriage. Her husband has been unfaithful and they have an 11 month old daughter. Forgiveness is required in their situation!

    As for why I want to read this book, isn't this what we learn from God? So, anything that helps (blesses) my life is welcomed.

  • Patrick Myers

    The importance of leadership and forgiveness is a lesson I've learned all too well in my personal life and professional life. The mere compartmentalization of these "lives" was a mistake that turned into a bad choice over time. I made both mistakes and bad choices in my professional life as a manager and as a leader. Andy Andrews taught me that lesson of distinguishing between the two in a blog posted several months ago. As a husband, a father and most recently in my role as a stay-at-home Dad, I've learned the importance of distinguishing my mistakes from my bad choices. I am seeking now more than ever to be a true leader for my family. But as I saw in reading "Lead…for God's Sake" (Todd Gongwer), and as Andy emphasizes especially here, one of the most important things any leader can do is admit honestly to making a mistake, a bad choice, or both and seek the forgiveness of those who were hurt as a result.

    I have been a fan of Andy's for a few years, ever since I first stumbled upon his presentation of "The Seven Daily Decisions". Reading, listening to, understanding and incorporating those ideas have made such a huge impact in my life. His other writings continue to build upon these lessons for me–"The Lost Choice", "Island of the Saints", "The Noticer", his blogs and newsletters."The Heart Mender" is yet one more lesson that I look forward to incorporating into my library and my life.

  • Jeauxdy

    Wow! Thought provoking article.
    As a UGA graduate ('91), my university found itself in a bit of a sticky situation yesterday. Our Athletic Director has made a poor choice. Not a mistake, but a poor choice. We are all capable of them. It will be up to our President of the University to make the final decision on his fate. My wish would be that our President, Michael Adams, had a chance to read this post. It may provide a different set of thoughts for him to ponder. Regardless of the forthcoming decision by President Adams, it will not be an easy choice. Maybe our A.D. should read this as well.
    I ask for a copy of this book for a simple reason: I like Andy. I've forwarded his books to many of my friends. I have shown his DVDs at meetings and people have emailed me asking for more about him. His story telling is enticing. His message is strong, his humor refreshing. Who doesn't need more of that? I do!

  • http://intensedebate.com/profiles/worldwidebc1 worldwidebc1

    I recently sent a heartfelt apology to an agent of mine for saying "I hate you". It really does work if you make the apology from your heart. I was truly sorry I made the statement and it was made in the heat of anger. I will never do that again. -BC

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/KNicholls KNicholls

    These posts are so wonderful and speak so much to me. While I love the idea of an autographed copy of this book, I did just finish reading it as a part of the BookSneeze program and so I have a copy and believe you should send copies to someone who hasn't had the benefit of reading it.

    In this particular section, on the point of resetting, I found myself thinking about a position I held where this is exactly what happened to the leader. And that negativity is infectious. As much as I was personally hurt by that situation as someone who was very close to that leader, when I read Andy's book, I found myself knowing that forgiveness should be extended to that person. I pray that some day that leader will find the reset button as it hasn't happened so far and it is sad to see a wonderful Christian leader be stuck in a negativity cycle so much.

    For myself, reading the book has led to me evaluating my own life and the people I need to forgive. I appreciated it that it points out that the person doesn't have to ask for or even want our forgiveness, but by not forgiving them, we damage ourselves. It was truly a life changing lesson.

    Thank you to both Andy and Michael for your blogs. I follow them regularly and they have both changed my life in ways I cannot begin to describe.

  • Ross Fowler

    Question: Who do you know that might benefit from having their reset button pushed?

    i would say anyone who is in a position where your decisions affect anyone else weather or not that is ceo of a large corporation or a mother who manages the home needs to know how to press “THE RESET BUTTON” i heard your heart ii what i believe you were saying in that sincerity is the key. maybe the best to ask for forgiveness is before you are “caught” you know that place when you realize you screwed up and the people it affected realize it also

    • ross fowler

      lol also i would love a book to continue this learning road i am on

  • http://duanernisly.com Duane

    This is an amazing teaching… surely it is impossible to live life without making mistakes, but all too often they are actual choices that leaders make disregarding the counsel of others and going after their own ideas or desires…

    Regardless if they are mistakes or actual choices (even more so if the second) seeking forgiveness is essential… and knowing how to do so correctly…


  • http://www.TheFinanceCoach.net Scott Doehrman

    First off, Andy thank you for introducing me to Michael Hyatt's website and blog. Secondly, thank you for another terrific blog. I get so tired listening to and reading so called "prepared statement" apologies: "I want to say I'm sorry for embarrassing my family, my friends, my team, my fans…..(for getting caught)."

    Then I read "I am sorry. I am ashamed. Will you forgive me?" That is a powerful and humbling statement and question. I pray the words and attitude will come to me, the next time I make a poor choice.

  • Mark

    I’m sorry, I’m ashamed, will you forgive me…an inseparable trinity.

  • lucy

    Great Post!! I found out about the post from an e-mail from Andy Andrews. Thanks to you Mr. Hyatt for sharing. I'm definitely an Andy Andrews fan starting with a used paperback copy of Tales from Sawyerton Springs that I bought at a library booksale. I am retired, still trying to be a vital part of society and continue to read, learn, lead, and forgive. I would love an authographed copy of the Heart Mender by a truly great and inspiring author.

  • Andrea Bertani

    I have read many of Andy Andrews' books, I'm especially fond of the Travelers Gift. I have done weekly training seesions using the Travelers Gift book and DVD with my team. These trainings have had far-reaching positive results both personally and for my teammates!

    I also read the Leadership and Forgiveness blog. I'm so thankful for the simplicity in which it is written. I know that I will be able implement this idea very soon; there is someone who I do need to forgive formally. I appreciate the insight and so glad this came across my email. The timing is perfect!

    I've shared your books with nieces and other family members, teammates and other business leaders. So excited to read your latest book! Thank You!

  • http://twitter.com/colinnclarke @colinnclarke

    An interesting perspective, and morally, absolutely right on target. There is one thing that totally skews the ability to ask for forgiveness however: Lawsuit.

    Our litigious environment has now forced every company to instruct their leaders to, "Admit no guilt – ever." I am sure there are many occasions where a leader or manager has wanted desperately to apologize and ask for forgiveness, but legal counsel says, NO.

    It makes for a tough situation for all. Where do you draw the line? Where can you safely ask for forgiveness without risking the financial future of your entire company to an opportunistic lawsuit? Tough one to answer.

    • http://www.AndyAndrews.com Andy Andrews

      Yikes! That is a tough one. I am probably naive, but I would hope that forgiveness would lessen that chances of a lawsuit. And I would rather not have to forgive someone for a crazy lawsuit so lets hope we can avoid them with a proactive approach. Incidentally…do it privately and in person. Not in a letter, email, or over the phone. AA

  • http://intensedebate.com/profiles/petetackett petetackett

    I am a new reader for the past few weeks and I am weekly sharpened by your insights and guests. I have lived for the past year in the aftermath of a choice that was revealed in a mistake. I pastored the largest church in my county and have spent a year seeking forgiveness and apologizing. I have no plans to return to that leadership post but a year later, my relationship with the church continues to recuperate based on some of the principles these articles have addressed. In short, they work!

  • Judy Adkisson

    Michael, what a wonderful way to "add fuel to the fire" All of Andy's books touch our hearts and shape our lives, what a awesome way to give us an opportunity to share wisdom with others! I especially enjoy listening to Andy's audio books, and happen to have Tales from Sawyerton Springs, but never bought a hard copy – would love to have a copy under the new title! Is there hope for the movie?! Thank you for your generosity is offering 100 free signed copies of "The Heart Mender" – JCA

  • Pingback: Leadership and Forgiveness, Part 1()

  • Priscilla Martin

    I read "Island of Saints" several years ago and was captivated by first, the setting. My daughter was born in LA (Lower Alabama), so that area is dear to my heart. I have walked almost every place described in the book which has become "The Heart Mender".

    Second, I have had several major opportunities in the recent past to put the 'Forgiveness" principle Andy writes about so well into action. As a result, members of my family whom I love dearly are living life as whole people, without condemnation or guilt. The way I present forgiveness is this, "So, let's assume that (whatever the 'thing' was) is 100% your fault. That is why Jesus died, to take ALL your guilt on Himself, therefore in my eyes too, you are not guilty." Amazing how that short sentence brings healing!

    The flip side of this coin is that I have a renewed determination to seek forgiveness when I am the one who has 'blown it'.

    Thanks, Andy for giving such a great life-tool.

  • http://www.LandedGentryBlog.com Brian Gentry

    Great blog post. Forgivness of yourself and others is so core to the idea of "hitting the reset button" of life. Just an hour ago I had an aquantaince drop by my office. He was sharing his struggle with his business and trying to figure out where to go. We talked about how we need to reset in life from time to time, but iI find that "reset" is concept we all understand, but rairly have the courage to do.
    Andy does a great job of helping instill that courage.

  • Nelson Worden

    I was most impressed with the principle of forgiveness as set forth in the book, Island of Saints. I frequently use and share excerpts regarding forgiveness as written on pp 101, 119,120, 149, 157, 158, and pages 235-237. I have often felt that forgiveness is more for us, our attitude, relationships than it is for the other person. I am looking forward to reading further insights in “The Heart Mender.”

  • http://www.speaker.judithrobl.com Judith

    Why would I want a copy of Andy's book? Although I've been on this road for 18 years now, I don't know it all and would relish having more perspective to share with the groups to whom I speak.

  • Bob Campbell

    I've never read Andy's material, but after reading this post, I'm definitely needing to! Thank you for this important post!

  • Kathey Cox

    Oh, how I would love to have an autographed copy of "The Heart Mender"! I have read all of Andy Andrews' books since I first picked up "The Traveler's Gift" and fell in love with it. I have lent my copy out so many times, I'm not sure who has it right now. I also read "Island of Saints", which I believe is the same story as "The Heart Mender". I love the story and the way Andy can make true stories so interesting and full of life! Andy seems like such a down-to-earth and REAL person and I would love to meet him someday. In the meantime, having an autographed copy of his latest and greatest book so far would be awesome! It would bring such joy to my heart to own one of these books. I promise I would be very careful about loning it out.. Thank you for the opportunity to tell you what a fan I am of Andy Andrews. He is not only a very talented writer and storeyteller, but through his writings I feel like he is also my friend.

  • http://musteric.blogspot.com Matt Musteric

    I think it is crucially important that we reclaim the language of forgiveness and reconciliation over against the popular (but empty) "I'm sorry" and "That's OK." An apology is sometimes appropriate, but forgiveness cuts right to the heart of the matter: something is not right and we desire for it to be better.

    Asking for forgiveness is also an act of grace and humility. It involves us taking the posture of a servant, which is appropriate and necessary for followers of Jesus. Forgiveness invites genuine humility, which is life giving.

    I have often commented that if I, as a Christian, would be attentive daily to prayer and forgiveness, that's more than half the journey home to God.

    Thank you for sharing your work.

  • http://twitter.com/elsinger @elsinger

    Great post! I would love to have a copy of Andy's new book. Just over a year ago I took on a mangement role at my job. I'm hoping his new book would help me in that role. Thanks for the giveaway!

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/jackalopekid jackalopekid

    As I read this, I imagine Andy reading it in his southern accent. Love it and thanks for the conviction. I got to go say sorry to someone now.

  • @dentmaker

    Love the comment about “knowing the difference between a mistake and a choice”… The act of reconciliation starts here as we own our mistakes and look hard at our choices. A funny thing is that the non-profit I love is trying to do this very thing in Iraq promoting peace while trying to help a large number of kids who need heart surgeries (http://heartmender.org). They had called their summer tour the Heatmender tour before I learned about this book. I’d love to read it!

  • http://jordanlindsayh.blogspot.com/ Jordan

    I would like a copy of this book because I am a pastor's daughter who has grown up watching others take advantage of my father and family. We have been through several Church splits and I have struggled with unforgiveness in the Church and within leadership. However, I feel that God has called me into ministry and I know I will deal with these issues in the future. I am always looking for perspectives on forgiveness and leadership.

  • Wilma Gringhuis

    What a powerful lesson – "mistake vs. choice" Both have consequences. This message makes one realize that we need to take responsibility for our actions and deal appropriately with our choices that involve others, especially if we "hurt" them.
    Andy once again packs a powerful punch – and so readable and refreshingly honest.
    Keep up the good work !

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/ronlane Ron Lane

    I love to read and listen to Andy. I have read the Traveler's Gift, Seven Decisions, The Noticer and I follow him online. He is a very inspiring person and he also has a great way of expressing things to make you think.

    I would love to add an autographed copy of The Heart Mender to my collection of Andy's books.

  • Valerie Yadush

    I'd love a copy of this book. I've read Mastering the Seven Decisions, (as well as did all of the writings in it and got a lot out of it), I read The Traveler's Gift, The Noticer, Return to Sawyertown Springs, and The Lost Choice. I also have two copies of Mastering the Seven Decisions as well as The Noticer. One of each I bought when I first read them as well as one of each I ordered that were personalized and autographed. :) Andy Andrews is an amazing writer. My father and I did a lot of talking about it, especially when we were doing the assignments.

  • Sherry Coats

    I cannot imagine anyone who would not benefit from Andy Andrews' wisdom and insight. His words inspire and speak to us all. Meeting/hearing him in person is on my "bucket list". Until that happens, I'll have to be content in reading and rereading his written words. And if I do have the honor and pleasure of checking that goal off my list, I am certain that I will be even more moved by Andy's message.
    One hundred books… maybe they should be read and passed on to one hundred more who would then continue sharing the story. Regardless of one's postion or relationship challenges, anyone would benefit and grow closer to the person God intends for him/her to be after seriously and prayerfully reading Andy's words. It would be an honor to have his autographed words to learn from and share with others.

  • Debbie Adams

    I enjoyed The Travelers Gift very much and am sure I will enjoy The Heart Mender as well! I feel blessed to have met Andy Andrews he is a very inspiring person.

  • Duane

    I sit here having a cup of coffee reading this before I have to start cleaning my empty house. I worked so hard for this and now its headed to the real estate market. All the memories and good times because I made a bad choice. The wife and daughter left about 8 months ago. I'm holdiong on to the house hoping for a miracle but its not coming. I didn't know how to say I was sorry and ask for foregiveness.

  • http://none Brenda Truitt

    Wow, your short synoposis of the book really moved me as I have an area in my life that really needs work when it comes to forgiveness.

    I was fired late in the day on a Friday from a high leadership position and was not allowed to speak to my staff, pass on vital info about projects in process, say goodbye to good friends and colleagues – just given a box to pack up and leave. This was immensely humiliating and intentionally hurtful and I will always (hopefully not with the help of your book) wonder what ALL of the dynamics were to precede this unbelievable event.

    So as not to mislead, I made some grave “political” mistakes and choices, but the “punishment” did not fit the “crime”, so 5 years later I am still wondering when I will truly forgive the decisionmakers in this event.

    From reading the excerp, I think the principles and information there can help me forgive and restore relationships. I would love to read this book. Thank you for writing it and for sharing the discernments given you by our Lord with all of us who need to move on.

    God Bless you,
    (512) 699-8676

  • http://intensedebate.com/profiles/byanofsky byanofsky

    If I win or not, this book has been added to my list of books to read. I recently graduated college and have been relearning life: college kind of gave me a messed up view of it. Reading blogs such as this, reading books such as "The Heart Mender," show me that the way to success (any form of success) is often the complete opposite of what I was told: give instead of always trying to get. Or, as this book describes, power comes not from being super human, but showing that you are human and will err and should ask for forgiveness.

    Just reading this post, at least five different situations popped into my head where I knew I'd need to apologize. One involves a girl. I already asked her for forgiveness. And another with my business partner. She was right, I was wrong, and I'm asking her to forgive me.

    I've discovered this just from reading the post. Imagine what I will discover after reading the book.

  • Will Perry

    In an effort to heal from some of my devastating choices I found the Divorce Care and Celebrate Recovery ministries. I now am helping others recognize the choices they have made and heal from them. I have appreciated Andy Andrews insights in his other books and would love to read this book so I can have more tools as I work with people who are divorcing or have divorced. Divorce is certainly a choice that has devastating impacts on more people than just the two who are divorcing. Being able to help people mend their broken hearts will help avoid some divorces and lessen the devastation in other divorces. Please help me help these people push the reset button in their lives by sending me a copy of The Heart Mender.

  • http://www.halojane.com Sarah Flowers

    This new book sounds great, cant wait to either win or buy my own copy. Thanks, Michael for your great info, blog and for using the internet in such a great way for your company. :)

    • Sarah F

      I forgot to put why I want a copy. There are a lot of relationships in my life that could use help I think this book is offering. Im hopeful and cant wait to read it!

  • http://levittmike.wordpress.com Michael Levitt

    One of the many blessings of being a Christian is that He has forgave us for all of our sins.

    All of them.

    As His children, we often forget that we need to bestow the same grace to others, and seek forgiveness for those that we have hurt.

    Blessings on your 4th, and the week ahead!

  • http://TescoPlanet.com Brian Bakken

    Thank you Michael for this post and Andy for what you do. I have already read The Heartmender and found it to be the BEST BOOK I HAVE EVER READ!! On this 4th of July holiday, as we enjoy the freedoms afforded to us by the men and women of our Armed Forces, I would like to send 100 Heart Menders overseas to our troops. I will do this through the USO and would appreciate someone contacting me to arrange this bulk order. Is this possible or should I buy through a retailer? In any case, this book is phenomenal and I am already recommending it to everyone. (PS Put me in the mix for the possibility of an autographed copy.)

  • Helena

    I have read most of Andy’s books and have found them profound in a very personable and readable form. I have read the original story that this new book (The Heart Mender) updates and I would really like to share it with friends who have a serious problem. They have a son who hasn’t spoken to them in 12 years. Talking could begin the healing process along with God’s grace. God’s forgiveness is beyond understanding and the fact that He can enable us to forgive the unforgiveable is totally amazing.

  • http://None Barbara Barrett

    Anything that has “Andy Andrews” mentioned, I will pay attention to it. A book, an email,a TV listing, a radio announcememt, etc. He will always be my number ONE “voice” to help me be a better person. To love life and the people I come in contact with more. He is my true inspiration!!!! How lucky you are to actually know him in person. Someday it is my hopes to be that “lucky”.

  • http://www.easthaven.net Hampton

    Leaders need to be the first to apologize whether they think they need to or not AND whether they think it’s deserved by the other person or not.

  • Jeff Brown

    Excellent post! I believe I have all of Andy's books and CDs, DVDs, etc except this new book. I use his materials daily in my role as leader of a department in county government. I seize every opportunity to practice and provide instruction to my supervisors on the importance to, as Andy says, "decide to face each day with an attitude of forgiveness". You are so right, if we can distinuish between our choices and mistakes and truly seek "forgiveness" for our wrong choices I believe we can be more responsible leaders, I know that is true for me. This is my first exposure to your blog but I have definitely bookmarked it and will be making plans to attend your events. As a retired military officer having served in the Marines and the Army, I know the importance of learning good leadership principles and I am always looking for good leadership training. You have great material. Thanks for being a "Patriot" by teaching the true meaning of leadership.

  • Adam

    Having read many of Andy's books, I am eager to read 'The Heart Mender'. Andy's writing style is great and I'm sure this book focusing on forgiveness will be a gem. I would like a copy of this book because I believe forgiveness is one of the most important things for our leaders today. I believe this book will have the power to transform those that read it.

  • Anthony Spallone

    This is an awesome post. To be honest, at first i didn't want to read it because it was on forgiveness and I don't use this blog for theology as much as I do for organizational and leadership skills that are biblically based. But, after reading this blog, it really it home with me and I am going to have some people that I serve with read it. Thank you so much for what you said and I hope I can benefit more from the book. Thank you

  • Cliff Bowman

    I would love to have a copy of the book by Andy Andrews, "The Heart Mender, A story of second chances".

    My reason is, I am a pastor who minister to several in my congregation who struggle with some bad decisions they have made in their past. I try and tell them that you cannot undo, or redo but that you can redeem. I doesn't seem to be getting through. Perhaps this book will give me some other insights.


  • Natalie

    Great post! I would truly enjoy a copy of this book for no other reason than I need a constant reminder to extend forgiveness to those who have wronged me and to ask for forgiveness when I have wronged others. It is so easy for me to hold on to a past injury that I easily forget how many times Christ has forgiven my transgressions. As a new mother (we welcomed our newborn little girl 15 days ago) this will serve as a wonderful reminder to not only extend forgiveness but also ask for it!

  • Jon

    I would like to receive a copy of "The Heart Mender". I went through a divorce that almost split our church. I was married to the Pastor's daughter. She accused me of a "question of infidelity". I insisted that I was innocent. No one was asking for forgiveness. Everyone was on a witch hunt to find out who was guilty. All things said and done. The divorce went through, the Pastor left for a church 1000 miles away and people just shook their heads and wondered what happened. To this day there are people that are not talking to each other. Forgiveness could have saved a lot of heartache and perhaps a marriage and a ministry.


  • ricky

    Every moment in a relational exchange is a teaching moment. Leaders/teachers/pastors seem to miss, often, the idea that there must be a modeling of that which we teach. Jesus both taught and modeled the truth.
    As a leader in several areas of life, I know that an excellent resource, such as Andy’s book, will encourage me to seek forgiveness when I fail to heed the warning signs. Merely reading the thoughts provided here on michael’s site has created a heart to give consideration to my family and ministry as it relates to my own leadership. I could only imagine what other things I will learn from the book, itself. I think the other neat part of this is how I will then be able to learn and then model/teach these principles to someone else.

  • Michelle C

    Oh. I had a great comment written, then I hit spell check and lost it all. Ok, I'll give it ago again.
    I think everyone could benefit from recognizing the reset button is available and it's not incredibly horrible to engage it. For some, they use their vacation to reset, to relax, to rest, to take some time for themselves to re-focus. I take the Labour Day Weekend, and head to a local Summer Christian Camp with a good group of friends. This is the last of the summer that I have to push the reset before work gets really busy. I work in a College where September thru mid-October is the busiest, most hectic, stressful time of year. Without that weekend with friends, having some good God time and a specially selected book for the weekend, I know I would not be able to effectively serve the students I deal with. So I would love a copy of "The Heart Mender" by Andy Andrews to read on my reset weekend.

  • http://beckyjmiller.com Becky Miller

    Forgiveness. We expect an apology to become an instant salve to heal the gaping wound that ultimately requires stitches. What happens though, when damage is done, and no genuine apology comes? Forgiveness is required of the injured party whether repentance from the offender is offered or not. Having lived through the ultimate betrayal of Christian brothers I understand what a difficult journey the road to forgiveness truly is. It has been three years since my husband and I were left for dead by men of God and the road to recovery has been one I would not wish on anyone. Through God's divine intervention and the unconditional love of friends we have made great progress. There are days though that bitterness tries to rise. My desire? As a Christian leader, I would hope to never inflict the type of pain that we lived through onto another human. I strive to walk in love and humility with wisdom to know when I'm wrong so that I might offer the sincere olive branch of repentance to someone I've wronged. I feel Andy's book would help me not only complete my own personal journey of healing, but offer insight into to relationships and help me to not inflict the type of pain I endured on anyone else.

  • http://mamawkim.blogspot.com Kimberly Flotho

    The idea of forgiveness is challenging. It seems easier to give forgiveness than to implore for forgiveness from others. There have been people in my life, at the fringes of my life, and apart from my life that have asked or should be asked for forgiveness. Despite my weary attempts at trying to live a life of faith there are times I feel that I need help in reaching that next step. I would sincerely appreciate the opportunity that winning this book would provide for me. Thank you.

  • Pingback: Your Response to a Bad Choice is Different than Your Response to a Mistake « Ministry Management Memo()

  • Verna Haberman

    I'm excited to read the new book. I am continuously inspired by Andy. I pass out THE SOCKS FOR CHRISTMAS book on a regular basis. I work with homeless children. After giving a local car dealer a copy of the book this Christmas, he was so moved he helped me with a campaign to "KNOCK THE SOCKS OFF OF POVERTY" and collect funds to buy new socks and undies for my kids, we raised $10,400 in a month's time.
    Andy's books touch my life in such a way it is easy for me to share the message and inspire others to a better life.
    I'm anxious to see what path the new one will take me on.

  • http://blog.lifestrike.com David Valencia

    Has Andy ever been forgiven for something bad, really bad? If not, then he is just theory….until you know in your guts how Jesus made it possible for us to be forgiven…then Andy might be a good friend of yours but until he comes out and tells everybody how he has messed up…he will not been helpful….if he told you how he messes up with power, lust, money…Hey Michael…..would you put his stuff on your blog?

  • chgirard

    What a great concept – to ask someone for forgiveness! How often have I said something I didn't mean that hurt someone and they were offended for a great length of time, causing irrepairable damage to our relationship! If I had merely said, I'm sorry. I didn't mean to hurt you. How long would they have been offended? I don't know, but I do know it would be shorter than not saying anything. It takes a great deal of courage and character to ask for forgiveness. This is something I struggle with. But looking back throughout history, many great leaders have asked for forgiveness. I need to search through my character and ask for forgiveness, but forgive myself first for having let myself down.

  • Amy

    I hope it's not too late. I loved this post on forgiveness at such a crucial time in my life, but I cannot disclose all of that info here. In our 'me-me-me world' of society we do not want to be the 'weak one' to apologize. Many times we may not see that we did anything to apologize for. I also find that too many people cannot forgive because they do not know what it is like to be forgiven just like to love is to be loved. I am quite interested in this new book. I know I could benefit from reading it (which would help others, too, by my sharing what I learn), but there is someone in my life who really does not understand forgiveness yet he 'teaches' forgiveness. Humility and selfless love, two things we seem to be lacking in great amounts these days. It is hard for us to admit that everything is not always about us.

  • c purvis

    The Athletic Director at the University of Georgia would benefit greatly from this at this tragic time in his life!!!

    • http://www.AndyAndrews.com Andy Andrews

      Yep…that is a classic example of saying, "I'm sorry" for a choice. It never works… AA

  • wardoyle

    I know that God always shows us wha we need to see, but nevertheless i always seem to be surprised when something like this falls in my lap just when I need it. I have been struggling with depression (doctor's diagnosis) for a couple of years now, but I am beginning to see that it really isn't depression it is lack of forgiveness that is eating away at me.. I have been working with a counsellor on self-forgiveness because I do believe that is the crucial step that I am sadly missing. It is really sad because i am missing out on all the healing and love that is right in front of me. God wants me to feel him and know him, but I am stuck in the box I have created around myself. I have been hearing a lot about Andy's new book and I will read it and no doub find it just as amazing as his others.

  • http://intensedebate.com/profiles/moveintoaction moveintoaction

    I teach life management skills and leadership workshops to churches, businesses, and communities. I also coach individuals who are seeking purpose and balance in their lives. Many times their ability to move forward in their lives and relationships is impeded by baggage they carry from their life experiences whether the experiences were the result of their own choices or actions or just circumstance. I would like to win a copy of this book to read and share with those I teach and coach who could benefit from seeking forgiveness in order to move forward and get out of "the living hells" they are stuck in regardless of the life area they seek to change.

  • http://twitter.com/makasha @makasha

    Lately, leadership has been a re-occurring topic of discussion in my home. My husband and I, both from broken homes, are trying to focus on leading our family (2 boys ages 6 and 3) to have a heart for God. We hope that this tactic will help them make good choices. We want our children to look to us as role models and not to people in the media.

    In addition to the desires we have for our home, my husband is pursuing his doctorate in organizational leadership. This would be a great addition to our leadership library as many of the books we have are from a secular perspective.

  • Laura

    I don't actually have any magic reason that you need to choose me. There may be someone else more deserving. And, if so, I am sure they will be very blessed. However, I would be honored at the chance. As I sat here reading, then re-reading this blog post (to make sure I didn't miss anything) I sat here with tears in my eyes. As a mom of three children, I could relate on many levels. I know that this book would be an eye-opener, and could help in a variety of ways in my life. When I finish the book, it would be an honor to share with someone else who I know would both read and benefit as well. No matter who receives this gift, thank you for the generousity and kind thoughts behind the offer.

  • http://masterpastor.blogspot.com Michael Demastus

    I love learning and growing and this looks like a book that will help me do both. I would love to have a copy to help me in my ministry!

  • http://Twitter Nancy Johnson

    I would love a copy of Andy’s new book. I have been inspired by his work for several years now, since I first heard him on public TV special. His book Traveler’s Gift and it’s principals changed my life and how I think about things. I had the privilage at WOF this year to meet Andy and talk to him. It was awesome. I haven’t gotten his new book yet because I lost my job and funds are tight. But I am so looking forward to being inspired by Andy again.

    Nancy Johnson

  • Chrus

    Being new into ministry I feel like I need all the emcouragment and teaching I cam get! I herd this was an incredible book! Look forward to reading it!

  • http://twitter.com/julnessalyn @julnessalyn

    This book is hitting the nail on the head!! I really would like to read and share this book with many others. I know in my own life saying sorry for hurt I may have caused is not easy.

    In my heart I have forgiven my father for what he has done to me throughout my life, but I find it hard to utter the words. Reading this complete book would encourage me to spread forgiveness everywhere and try to encourage others to do the same.

  • http://twitter.com/jerradzitnik @jerradzitnik

    As someone who was in a position of leadership, but then made a wrong choice, I feel like there are some steps that need to be taken to fully realize complete healing and authority in my gifting. I am starting to be placed in a leadership role once again and am excited to be so, but at times question if I can be effective back in that role and often wrestle with shame. I am actively walking out the truth that the grace of Christ provides us, bu think this would be a helpful book to read. I am also nearly accredited as a life coach and I think this would be a helpful resource in helping others that are struggling with similar situations.

  • jay johnson

    I'm interested

  • http://www.studentsdesigningforstudents.org Sarah Kim

    I have been on many mission trips and on only one was I a leader. I realized that I created a lot of hurt and stress especially to my co-leader that I lost all confidence to lead again. It was only through asking God for forgiveness and even to my teammates and co-leader that I found confidence again to be part of ministry. However, I am still far off being a forgiving person. Still, bitterness sits in my heart and gives the devil a foothold of me. To be free and liberated from any kind of devil's foothold, I would love to learn on how to forgive and share that knowledge with my fellow missionary leaders.

    I will be going on a one year mission trip starting next month and I know it would be helpful overseas as it would be here.

    P.S. I loved your book, The Traveler's Gift. It inspired me to read so many other Christian books and a different outlook on life.

  • Rose

    I am excited about reading The Heart Mender, and would truly love an autographed copy of Mr. Andrews book. Being from the Gulf Coast as well, I have heard the stories of the German U-boats and the many lives and vessels that were destroyed during W.W. II. I can't wait to see how Mr. Andrews weaves this tale of leadership and forgiveness. Andy Andrews is surely a multi-talented man, but I love his candor and humor most of all. Looking forward to reading The Heart Mendor, as well as The Butterfly Effect. Andy never disappoints! Roll Tide!

  • annemariao

    I'd like to get a copy of this book so that my mom can read it! She gave me a copy of The Noticer and I know it really touched her a lot, so I would like for her to have a copy of another of Andy Andrews' books. I think my mom would love to read this–she teaches in the area of leadership management. Hopefully this book can be a blessing in her life, and this time I could return the favor by giving her a copy of an Andy Andrews book!

  • http://www.simpletexan.com Ken Carr

    Very insightful post Andy – thank you. I sometimes think the concept of recognizing the need for forgiveness is lost on so many.

    Michael – I would love to receive a signed copy of Andy's book! My wife and I actually buy copies of The Traveler's Gift and hand them out to friends and family that we know could learn from them. I would be honored to have a book actually signed by him – thanks for considering me!


  • JoAn

    Yes, i could use some insight on forgiveness, too!

  • jane c

    We live in a society where it is always someone other than ourselves at fault. I am a pastor’s wife as well as I work in a ministry with young people. This is a pertinent message for me and one that needs to be taught to our young people. What better way to teach it, but to live it.

  • Teresia M.

    I have2admit, originally I only followed the link here because I am the homeschooling mother of5precious children and the wife of a seminary student. As such, I have, out of necessity, become a master of claiming all things free. I seem2Bin good company among the other seminary wives! After reading the post, I am sincerely and personally interested in the book.

  • Teresia M.

    I have been hurt in horrific ways by a trail of people in my life. 2tell you my storyUwould easily Cwhy I could benefit from such a book. In the last year the Lord has been guiding me through a deeper understanding of 4giveness. I am reading everything I can find on the topic. I have hand written every verse in the Bible on the subject in a notebook&have been praying the Lord would help me truly live a 4giving life. I don't want2just say I 4give you.I want2 "flesh out" that 4giveness. The thing I have most learned through all of this study is that of all the pain I have experienced none is deeper than the pain Christ took on the cross4ME! Christ died4me while I was yet a sinner. Even the worst act of sin done against me was nothing compared2what I owe Christ. So my forgiveness2anyone in this life is merely a symbol of the gospel2hurting people around me! So, receiving a copy of this book would help me deepen my understanding of 4giveness and hopefully someday as a minister's wife help me communicate that 2other women who undoubtedly will have been hurt deeply!

  • http://Www.kurtzcreations.com Brenden Kurtz

    I would love to receive a copy of this book. I am a 37 year old father of five, running my own small business. I have found over the last few months that not only does God life us, He pursued us! He has been pursuing me lately and thankfully, I finally slowed down enough to be caught. Things around me and relationships I am in have been changing daily for the better. My wife and children are feeling different as well due to the change the Holy Spirit has brought on to me. My main reason for posting for this book is financial. We simply cannot afford to spend money on anything right now that isn’t food or bills for the household. Although I am in yhe hardest financial siuation I have ever been in, my faith in Jesus Christ is stronger than ever before. Thank you, Brenden Kurtz

  • Kevin

    Great post! I had the honor of doing a "forgiveness ceremony" for parents of 2 young adults a number of years ago who had gotten pregnant but weren't married. I had just hired one and then was surprised by the news of indiscretion. I first walked alongside through a repentant time with the couple (who now are married with 2 children) where they asked for God's forgiveness. We then gathered with both of their parents and they wrote notes asking for forgiveness from them – what a powerful time of healing for all concerned! Thanks for the reminder of how forgiveness can move people from anger to love.

  • D1clute

    I have always been taught the importance of forgiving and have had significant experience with learning to forgive the unforgivable and as a follower I have had opportunity to ask forgiveness of my bosses However asking forgiveness in this context in previous work environments would have meant leaving myself vulnerable to and that was not an option. Yet now I see the wisdom of this and as I grow into my role as a leader in my ministry I want set the best example and do things in a way that is truly a Christ-like example so that I can to my old self and die to the world. I want to become less so that Christ will become more.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/Joe_Sewell Joe Sewell

    I'd like a copy of this book because maybe, just maybe, it would teach me how to truly forgive people like my deceased father, who didn't know how to forgive but who did know how to make my life & my mother's a living Hell. Not that he wasn't a good provider, or that there wasn't some semblance of "love" in there. He, like many people in the small farm town in which I was raised, would rather condemn than forgive. He himself couldn't forgive his own father, and vice versa, nor his brother. I thought I knew how to forgive — after all, I accepted Christ's gift of forgiveness — but at times resentment I didn't even know still existed wells up in me.


    • http://intensedebate.com/people/Joe_Sewell Joe Sewell

      (Sorry, but IntenseDebate said my original comment was "a little too long." Here's the rest of it.)

      I also need to learn how to forgive myself for following in my father's footsteps at times. I'm too quick to lash out at my wife, rather than forgive without needing to understand. There are times when I've hurt her emotionally, and I still harbor self-hatred for that.

      Finally, I need to learn how God could continue to forgive me when I make choices like the ones Mr. Andrews gives here. I still feel like I have the "responsibility" to make amends, to return things to the way they were before I "broke" them. Often no human can … but I hold myself responsible, believing that God does, too. Down that path lies a wall between me and the ability to be forgiven.

  • http://twitter.com/Eagle9525 @Eagle9525

    FORGIVENESS is the ultimate key to healing and it is the way of LIFE. Without forgiveness, you will not learn the life lessons and experience life to the fullest! Forgiveness is a key factor in personal development. If you don't learn to forgive freely, it stunts your personal and professional growth.

  • http://intensedebate.com/profiles/fghart fghart

    You really nailed a key point – there's a big difference between sincere apologies and regret voiced over being caught. The challenge I struggle with is *when* to apologize. I used to over-apologize (i.e. apologize for things that I wasn't responsible for) but I'm wondering if now I'm under-apologizing and over-rationalizing. I really appreciate how you've framed the rewards and benefits of a sincere apology for mistakes or poor choices. I plan to maintain a period of self-assessment and solicit feedback to gauge how I'm doing in this area.

  • http://www.wordizm.com Lori Zwermann

    I know from experience that an honest, "I was a jerk. I'm sorry. " makes a tremendous difference. Without that sort of reset the argument simply escalates. I need to remember to ask for forgiveness more often and offer justification less.

    BTW I've not gotten the chance to read Heart Mender yet – I do like the title change. I think it's more compelling. It is definitely on my list of must reads.

  • Kaye Jackson

    I would like one of the autographed copies of this book. I have spoken to many people about forgiveness, but sometimes a story gets the idea across more than a "sermon". I would like to have this book to loan out to my friends and acquaintances to help them. I cannot post a link on facebook or twitter since I have no account with either, but would like you to consider this anyway. Thanks. Kaye Jackson

  • http://www.benreed.net Ben Reed

    I recently read Andy’s “The Noticer” and absolutely loved it. I am excited to read this upcoming book because I know how asking for forgiveness has helped me to fight against pride as a husband and leader.

  • Linze Anderson

    Forgiveness…It seems like such a simple word to say but sometimes it can be the hardest thing one can ever do! I would love to win this book and learn the true meaning of the word. To Forgive and To Let Go of the Feelings that I have towards others. Is something that I really could use right about now. To lift this burden and finally heal those wounds would be such a blessing.

  • Nancy

    My dad taught me at an early age the power of asking forgiveness. It was not what I expected from my parent as a teenager. I hadn't experienced it from an adult before. In working with 600 teens every day, I talk about my dad with them when they say things like, "I don't apologize" or "I can't apologize." It's more difficult to apply my childhood lesson with adults in my life. After disappoints recently and words said, I did go to my supervisor and ask for forgiveness. It came much more slowly than it should have.

    I read many leadership books, but I've never read one that addresses leadership and forgiveness. I would be very excited to read it and share it with colleagues.

  • zerkangel@juno.com

    Forgiveness is a hard thing to do, especially if it's someone other than family. With family, it's easier. These are people that you love and hold dear to your heart. I've gone through the heartache of forgiveness with a family member. It's tough. I know that it is different with leaders, but we should also be forgiving with them. They are human and make mistakes. I make mistakes everyday. I'm not perfect and there is not one of us on this earth that is perfect. Forgiveness is something we should all think about a little more. I sure want the forgiveness of those I hurt and disappoint. Don't you?

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/MichaelLett MichaelLett

    An autographed copy of the book would mean a lot to me. I am soon to be a new father (actually Thursday, June 8th, 2010 at 8AM). The baby is breech so my wife has to have a scheduled c-section so we know the exact moment. As I think about becoming a father and forgiveness, I can see how the two are so integrally linked as Forgiveness and Love were two great gifts that our Heavenly Father gave to us. He forgave of us of our sins and accepted us no matter what we had done and gave us everlasting life in union with Him.
    I know that I will have times in the coming years when I will need to forgive my son for what he has done, and will likely need to ask him for forgiveness as well. An autographed copy of the book would be a great item to hand down to him in later years, relate the story of forgiveness and how I received the book. Andy’s books have always meant the world to me since a friend introduced me to the Traveler’s Gift. Since then I have gotten it into the hands of over 400 people in one form or another and I still refer back to that book when I need inspiration. The Heart Mender will soon join that list with me.

  • http://www.twitter.com/chrishennessey Chris H.

    Forgiveness is something that is “easy” to learn but definitely hard to put into practice. Forgiveness is an essential part of a spiritual life. I would love a copy of The Heart Mender! Thanks

  • http://www.takechargeinc.com/ Mary Ellen

    This is a great topic and post, Andy. I agree, some leaders could use a lesson on how to be simply human. We all make mistakes, sometimes we make the wrong choices and therefore need to say your sorry, pick up the pieces and move forward. Some leaders today worry about ego and power too much, wouldn't saying "will you forgive me?" transfer some of their power?? No. But that is how they see it. A solution? Practice Mindful leadership- that is bringing yourself into the present, becoming aware of the situations and being able to leader others in a compassionate, yet passionate, tough but understanding way. Although not a new phenomenon, but being open and honest with one another can and will go a long way. http://www.themindfulleadershipblog.com

  • Michelle Taylor

    My husband would benefit from this book as he is trying to re-build his life after losing a job. He worked for his brother and their relationship deteriorated to the point that he was let go. Forgiveness is needed on both sides and the family is torn because of the rift. My husband has never been able to gain footing again and we are losing our house and our lives will never be the same.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/FayeB rfbryant

    Andy, It's partly your fault I'm published. Thank you.
    This book, so timely. I have a very good friend who is in the position of needing the mending. I would love to place this in his hands. He's said the words and is trying to live where he needs. I believe this would help him, encourage him and help him grow to where God wants him.

  • http://twitter.com/austispumanti @austispumanti

    Unfortunately I have learned the hard way that "i'm sorry" won't justly mend a broken heart. The mending must take place not only in the one who's heart was broken, but as equally important in the heart of the "heartbreaker." That heart needs healing too. The antidote, which takes great amounts of courage to muster, is four simple words "will you forgive me?" These words are almost as hard to say as "will you marry me?", but courage is due when we have effected those we love and impact daily. Stand up, the reward is great. There is freedom in forgiveness.

  • http://twitter.com/ProactiveMan @ProactiveMan

    I would like a copy of Andy Andrews’s book because I consider myself a lifelong learner. Every day, I'm amazed and struck by what one can learn out there if they will just open their eyes and listen – listen to the Holy Spirit, listen to what's going on around them, and listen to people you know, or feel, you should be listening to. It's this latter part that has drawn me in.

    I have already learned a lot from what I will call the "Thomas Nelson Circle." Between you, your company and your books (Fearless was really impactful to me; now working through my first Bible; The Maxwell Leadership Bible), I am learning, and growing more and more every day. I've read and watched the material on Andy's new book and I'm excited to see what life has in store for me from it.

    Thanks, Michael, for the opportunity!

  • Jack

    Exceptional post. What Andy is saying is so true; yet, often times we think to highly of ourselves and don’t think the humility is necessary. I can’t wait to read the Andy’s book. Thank you for the post and thanks to Andy for addressing such relevant material.

  • http://intensedebate.com/profiles/tejasfan His Girl

    Seems that God allows some people in our life that we have to find ourselves forgiving on a daily basis.These people can be family, employers, coworkers, neighbors or even Pastors. Once forgiven they turn around and cause another reason we must step back and forgive. I confess I really struggle with this at times. Then there are moments where I think I have forgiven but I keep bringing up what happened. So wishing I were more like God in that area. Let's not forget to mention self forgiveness. I seem to say I am sorry way more then I should I think that stems from being so hard on my self and not forgiving myself so I feel that others may be struggling with it as well.

    One of my Pastor's once stood before my church and asked a deacon for forgiveness for an argument they had. He lead by example and that really stuck with me. As a parent and a leader in the lives of my children I do ask for forgiveness. I know I am not above doing wrong and the need to mend that relationship.

    Seems forgiveness can be the easiest or the hardest heart decision.

  • Julie

    This is an awesome post! Thank you for sharing! I am in dire need of help with securing my own reset button!

    My husband and I have been making some bad choices for our family, the biggest one being not remaining in church. We have allowed church leadership and failed relationships keep us from God’s house and our children are suffering as a result. Consequently, our home life is suffering as well.

    Thank you again!

  • Vickie

    Truthfully I read the post to learn how to get the free book. Lucky me, the blog spoke right to my heart! I pray that I can take the principle taught and apply it to my life. I am hoping and praying that I can mend the broken relationship with my son. BTW I absolutely loved seeing Andy Andrews @ WOF.

  • http://www.facebook.com/AlewebSocial Tara Alemany

    As a single parent raising 2 kids, I was impressed early on by the power of asking for forgiveness, sometimes for things that would seem obvious to an adult, but not to a child. The stress of single-parenting would occassionally lead me to respond curtly or with frustration to my childrens' demands for time and attention that were in short supply. Those would be the times when I would follow up later with an apology, an explanation of my response (their contributions and mine), and a clear statement as to what I did wrong in the situation. This would always be followed by a request for forgiveness. While they didn't always agree with my decisions, the circumstances could always be put behind us because they still felt valued.

    I would love a copy of this book because I believe that seeking forgiveness is key to addressing so many of the pains and hurts we carry around with us, whether we are leaders in our homes or in the business world. I have read others of Andy's books, and LOVE them. Thus, I would really enjoy getting a copy of this book to encourage and nurture me as I continue to lead in both my home and my business relationships.

  • Brandon Jones

    I love Andy's writings. The Noticer is my favorite among those that I have read, but I have not put my hands on a copy of some of the latest books, such as Butterfly Effect or Heart Mender, although I am anxious to read them both.____I would like a copy of Heart Mender for my wife. Her mother left when she was two

  • http://intensedebate.com/profiles/kcroy kcroy

    I firmly believe the greatest gift we can give someone in life is a second chance. Andy Andrews and Michael Hyatt are two amazing men. I follow both on Twitter and I read their blogs regularly. (Andy needs to post more often.) I have read every Andy Andrews book, and I am looking forward to the Heart Mender. (I would like to compare how it evolved from Island of Saints.) Hoping I win a copy. One of my favorite quotes that goes along with Andy's theme is, "All Saints have a past, all sinners have a future." (I believe Oscar Wilde said this.) Best wishes to all. Also hoping Andy returns ask a guest on Hyatt's blog. Wonderful reading.

  • http://www.garykuyper.com Gary

    I could not agree more Saying sorry for a wrong or truly forgiving a wrong is something we do not do well. As a Husband, father, Leader and Friend I need to be challenged with Biblical model of forgiveness.

    I have found as a leader that asking for direction, forgiveness or just saying how can I do better builds a stronger trusting relationship.

    Then the living day to day to prove you really are repentant is the hard part, in todays society so many people are weary of those that say they are sorry.

    I look forward to this book, the Noticer was such a powerful story on perspective and the ability of individuals.

  • http://twitter.com/nckoyler @nckoyler

    I'm a pastor of a church of about 100 in Illinois. Last summer in an effort to creatively start some small groups, I started a summer reading club. I went to the local Family Christian Store and selected five books for the group to read. Each member could pick one book per month and once a month we would get together and discuss our selections. The biggest hit last summer was The Noticer by Andy Andrews. The group members were just drawn to Andy's story telling and the story of the Noticer. That is when I became a fan of Andy.
    This Summer, I began the group again and selected the Heart Mender as our June selection. Again we fell in love with Andy's writing.
    I would love to have a signed copy to add to my library and share with the group. I enjoy having signed books from my favorite authors and it would be a great discussion piece for the group.

  • http://twitter.com/buzzie1969 @buzzie1969

    I'd like to win a copy, thanks__marcus802001(at)yahoo(dot)com

  • http://twitter.com/sara_schaffer @sara_schaffer

    Thankfully, as Mark Sanborn says, we don't need titles to be leaders. I lead my children, my small group Bible study, my extended family & friends, and the people who follow my blog. I have needed to apologize to my children for being to harsh, my husband for being too arrogant, and my God for things I'm not comfortable writing here just yet. I would love to know more about authentic, effective leadership. Perhaps God will give me a larger platform someday (or maybe a smaller one). In either case, I would love to step forward in Christ's full freedom and forgiveness. Thank you for considering me for the book give-away today.

  • http://www.tinyurl.com/s-journey Sharman

    Asking for forgiveness, no matter who you are and who you are asking for forgiveness from, is simple. But it is not easy to do because of a overrated thing called EGO, also known as Edging God Out. It requires a humbling of oneself which is painful and no one willingly walks into pain. I remember a time when I had tense words with a member of my support staff. The next day during my morning prayer, I was compelled to forgive and to apologize to her as soon as I got into the office. I didn't want to do it. It was very hard for me particularly since I felt I didn't start it. Nevertheless, when I got into the office, I went to her office. I started to apologize but she stopped me and said it was all her fault and I had nothing to apologize for. We both smiled and our relationship improved. Forgiveness, either at work or at home, may not be an easy thing to do, but the rewards are immeasurable.

  • Marcia S. Clement

    I have a brother who is has been through a divorce in the last three years. Something else must also be going on, because he is withdrawing from our family, his children, and is showing such extreme bitterness and seems to have set his Christianity aside. I have read THE HEART MENDER, and when Josef so innocently makes the comment that his family was killed because her husband taught the Brits how to fly their aircraft, it is a heart-stopping moment. I think my brother at this time thinks he is the only one in the world who has been wronged. EVER! Additionally, my mother is from New Orleans, and my brother is a history buff, so I think he would read it for historical reasons. He needs forgiveness and to be forgiven. I think this book targets men better than any novel I have read in a long time. PLEASE consider sending me a copy. Thank you so much!!

  • Tyler White

    As a leader currently, there is so much miscommunication and pain currently, and I would love to have a resource like this to alter our culture, prayerfully towards humility, starting with me.

  • http://southernbelle886.blogspot.com @hasbell

    I love Andy’s books. They are always challenging and eye opening with encouragement to push you along. Would love a copy of his book.

  • NT

    As a person who works on a church staff, I am always looking for resources and tools that help me grow spiritually so that I may set the example and lead others. Forgiveness is an often discussed topic in the Bible because the Lord knows how important it is in order to maintain a right relationship with Him and with others and how hard it is for us as humans to embody this quality. Christ was our ultimate Example in this area. From reading this post, I believe this book will be incredibly helpful to me and my ministry. I hope you will consider sending me an autographed copy. Thank you for the great post!

  • cynthia

    To whom it may concern, I believe that God is the author of second chances. HE has given me many second chances. I would like to better learn how to give others second chances. I have just gone thru a deal w/ the pastor of our church, whom left our church w/out a word as to why. HE is now back, and i struggle w/ not getting angry w/ him for abandoning us. Would love to recieve the book , the heart mender.
    thank you so much for offering it in this way. cynthia

  • sisterbygrace

    Awesome resource. We all can benefit from it. Thank you for sharing :)

  • http://kingdomfoundation.wordpress.com Zeb

    Honestly, I want to be in right standing with God and find the wisdom he wants me to have and one of the things he says is found in Proverbs 10:14a – Wise [men] lay up knowledge. Another passage says to seek for wisdom as if it was gold or something I highly value. I am just trying to learn as much as I can. So I hope that I win thisvook so that I may learn more of Gods wisdom and knowledge so that He can use my fullest potential.

  • Deborah

    I would like a copy of this book because I have been on both sides, the one who caused the hurt as well as the one who was hurt. Of course, I moved on without thinking about a "reset button" which can make the difference in what happens next. Also, forgiveness is a topic that many do not understand or fail to understand. So, this book will shed a different perspective into this topic.

  • K Pate

    Andy's insight is so needful and appropriate. Thanks!!

  • http://encouragementacres.blogspot.com/ Donna Pingry

    There have been so many times when I have needed forgiveness and many times when I have needed to forgive. Forgiveness hasn’t always been automatic. There are still broken relationships in my life. Saying you are genuinely sorry doesn’t guarantee automatic forgiveness even if you mean it with all your heart. Hidden in my closet are some resentments and reluctance to forgive as well.
    When leadership makes mistakes we expect they are closer to God, more in tune with the Master, less likely to sin. We want to hold them as an example of what we want to become ourselves when we arrive someday.
    Sadly we are flawed people..whether we are in ministry or sitting in the pew.
    Forgiveness has taken me to the Master’s woodshed and forgiveness has driven me to His feet.
    I’d love a copy of this book to share with someone going through a hard time right now. This book has already blessed me and another person I shared it with so I’m hoping to expand the circle. Thank you, Andy Andrews and the wonderful people who shared their lives in his book. I can’t wait to see what God is going to do with this book.

  • http://www.mynsp.com/helenfu Helen Fu

    My father taught me: to forgive others is to be kind to yourself, then you don't have to carry the burden any more!

  • Carrie Matson

    The choice to forgive self and forgive others requires a the daily practice of renewing the mind with truth, grace, mercy and love. This enables a person to live a life of godliness, contentment, joy and unconditional love. When I am referred to as a hypocrite I completely agree with the accusation – no one but me and God know what I get away with in my own mind and in my own choices on a daily basis. No one is as interested in my own self protection and prosperous living as me and God. God however is perfect and flawless and knows what is best for me at all times with an eternal perspective. Because pride and fear often cloud my choices, forgiveness of self and others is a daily exercise that strengthens my dependence on God and my humility toward others. The greatest servant leader ever tells us to take the log out of our own eye before attempting to address the speck in another's eye. Forgiveness is an ongoing choice to live in freedom. The truth always sets us free.

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  • Father of the Bride

    My middle daughter and oldest grandchild were abandonned by her first husband. He left to chase pleasure. About a year later some friends from church introduced my daughter to the man who became her second husband. Numerous people told me what a fine person my daughter was seeing. He came riding in like a knight on a white horse. He sparkled and shined and said the right things. His previous marriage had ended when his wife became unfaithful to him. So, it appeared to be two wounded souls finding each other in the night.
    I felt a certain suspicion but I decided that I was only reacting to being challenged as the leader of the family and that maybe he was all that he appeared and we were told.
    Oh, if I had only listened to the inner warnings. So many people claimed he was victimized in his first marriage. His wife left him for another man and now I see why (not justifying it, I just see why).
    My daughter’s husband (now) has hurt so many in our family, church, and city. He deceived until recently he was exposed. He stole money from everyone who gave him a chance. All the while, posing as a Christian leader. Even setting up a Bible Study in which he invited those he was stealing from. He accepted the controversial position of deacon in our church. Controversial, because he had been previously married and some felt that excluded him from consideration. During this period he stole a few hundred thousand dollars from church staff, business partners, contractors and from my wife and I (because we were foolish enough to enter into a flip house business deal with him).
    After it all surfaced the family was hurt, angry, and confused. We still have those feelings despite so much prayer. The problem in a nutshell is that he is sorry he got caught, but not remorseful or repentant. He cries, but that is because he thinks everyone is being so mean to him. But if we relax our distance he immediately begins his strut. He has never asked me for forgiveness for stealing from me. He has even asked me to lend him money and a car so he can continue financially. He lied then also. He asked for 10s of thousands of dollars telling me it would clear his debt to everyone. If I’d have given him the money, it wouldn’t have come close to filling the hole. Some of the people who were stolen from have gone to the District Attorney and are seeking criminal charges.
    Now about my daughter. She has lost total respect for him. She is still in the marriage seeking direction from God. She has been attending marriage help from a Christian marriage counselor. Last week the counselor told my daughter that she didn’t have a marriage to save. Another Christian couselor had been meeting with my daughter’s husband and upon comparing notes they agreed that this was not a marriage to save.
    My daughter continues in the marriage waiting for more insight. She struggles everyday just to live in the same house.
    The issue is that no one and I mean no one, not our pastor (who has met with him numerous time) believes he is truly repentant. He just ran out of options. He was exposed.
    I don’t desire for him to get his just reward. I surly don’t want my just reward, either. We all just need an honest heart felt apology and inner change.
    He still wants to lead. He keeps telling my daughter that she needs to be the wife that God wants her to be and support him without judgement.
    Yeah, you’re right. Not seeking true repentance is a product of not accepting responsibility, nor understanding the depth of the pain, anger, and confusion his actions have caused. Please pray for my daughter and my granddaughter. My granddaughter suffers from his fits of anger. He has even screamed that he hates my granddaughter (7 yrs. old) and is jealous of her. What a mess. What deception. What a need for realization, repentance, forgivenss and love.

  • http://intensedebate.com/profiles/woody36060 woody36060

    We have only three choices in life:
    1. Change the person, place, situation or thing that is frustrating us.
    2. Divest ourselves of the person, place, situation or thing…
    3. Change our attitude as it relates to the above situation(s).
    Problem is that 1 & 2 seldom if ever work well. Number 3 however, ALWAYS works. The major ingredient in option 3 is forgiveness. Without forgiveness it is virtually impossible to appreciably and effectively change our attitude. Thanks to Andy for reminding us of this.

  • John Blankenship

    Sounds like good life changing information!!

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/chrisvonada chrisvonada

    Great post Andy, just found this buried in my July 4th weekend e-mails… I read The Heart Mender in record time (not a speed reader). I believe it's your best book yet !!!

  • http://www.spencemcdonald.com Spence McDonald

    This article touched me deeply. Thank you.

    Yes, we all have someone we need to apologize to for our misgivings. I know I do. We are not free from the sins upon others. Go and ask for forgiveness. I did just the other day and it will be a day by day connection that will share how sincere I am.

    So I was thinking… We have choices. Our choices can be positive or good and they might be bad choices. I believe we are smart people and know the difference between right and wrong. What I have witnessed has been that bad choices always equal bad consequences. It is like a law of the universe or something. Then there are the good choices we make that can produce either good consequences and sometimes bad consequences. Seems there is a risk with the energy of a good choice.

    So if there is a risk, do we make the choice anyway. Well, what does your internal ethics guidance system say. If you have high values then the the question is a no brainer. You take the risk and make the good choice because it matches your value system.

    Again, thanks for a great article. It was one more reminder to continue on the path of genuine forgiveness.

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