I would want nothing more than to be able to give the perfect explanation to any wrong, sin, mistake I have ever committed. To give the perfect explanation would absolve me of everything. All would suddenly be right with the world. Last week, I wrote about my hiding in the cave (I also wrote about this same subject back in January). If I could just come up with the perfect explanation I could come out of the cave, dust myself off, and we could all get back to business.
Here's the problem with that scenario: explanations are often nothing more than excuses we hope will justify our actions. You know this deal. You have used it yourself, "But mom, every one was doing it." Like mom is suddenly going to say, "Well, that makes everything better." What we were hoping is mom would accept our explanation as an excuse and we would be able to avoid getting in trouble for what we did.
So as I want to make explanation, point to someone else, or come up with an excuse, I realize only I made my choices of the past, and only I can make my choices for this moment and the future. Yes, we learn from our experience, and I am learning more every day.
Thankfully, I do not have to come up with the perfect explanation. I simply have to admit I was wrong and repent, that is turn back to God. I know that God will make everything right in the long run. It is true not just for me but for everyone. "All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God; they are now justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus." (Romans 3:23-24) I do not doubt that God forgives me. I do not doubt that my boys and my wife forgive me. What holds me in the cave most often is the doubt that others will not forgive, and I know an explanation will not be good enough.
So, here I am, a sinner forgiven, giving no explanation, and, for today, sitting just outside the cave.