when our kids need to hear “sorry”

I’m on the top bunk, curled under the Angry Birds duvet and right next to the Bear Grylls pictures. I’ve been granted my own pillow these days. It’s green with dinosaurs on it and waits for me each night before prayer and slumber.

We look up at the glow-in-the-dark stars and he tells me about his day in these moments. The highs, the lows, what he’s learnt, what God’s teaching Him.

And tonight he recounts an incident.

He’d taken a special lego construction into school as a treat, and his friend had broken it.

“Sorry”, his friend said “Do you forgive me?”

“And what did you say” I ask him.

“I told him ‘Of course I forgive you. Christians always try to forgive'”

I smile and think how much I learn from this little Jesus-follower.

And then I remember an incident. It was years ago but it comes to mind as if it happened today. This same child, this one I’m learning from right now, was the one who was banished in his room for yet again another “episode”. Those days were long and difficult and I felt helpless. Sometimes I forget just how helpless I felt. And I remember how he wouldn’t stay in his room and so I pushed the door and his finger was trapped in the door. In all the hysteria I didn’t realise what was happening and his finger stayed trapped in the door for long seconds.

And this little person, he still remembers that incident.

So I tell him “I’m sorry about that day, the day when your finger got trapped in the door. Mummy was cross and you’d been naughty but I didn’t tell you off in the right kind of way. And I’m sorry your finger got caught in the door. It was an accident but I know how much it hurt you. I’m sorry.”

He smiles at me, and with a gentle hug he says “It’s OK mummy, I forgive you.”


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