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The Gift of Forgiveness


Happy March! I hope you have enjoyed In This House, We Will Giggle. Let me know how January went with JOY and February with LOVE! I’d love to hear how it’s going with focusing on laughter over lectures. Imagine if our kids began to experience the goodness of Christ – through every day adventures. It’s possible!

And if you are just picking up the book, it’s not too late. Forgiveness is a timeless biblical virtue. You can read and try the activity anytime. However, the activity shared in the book is really meaningful during the season of Lent and days leading up to Easter.


Writer’s Block Led to This

To kick off this month, I wanted to share a moment during the writing journey. I was SO down (after a not-so-glorious morning of parenting) and SO tired of writing and staring at a blank screen. It was time to write this chapter on forgiveness and all I was feeling was pure shame and guilt. I didn’t feel qualified to share anything with any moms out there. I prayed that God would show up, in a big way. I not only wanted His words to flow – but I needed them personally.

And, he did show up. After I prayed, I started to type and this came out. Exactly like this. It was surreal. I didn’t stop until it was finished. It was by far – my favorite moment of writing this book.

So, enjoy an excerpt from In This House, We Will Giggle written by your Heavenly Father for moms like me and you.

Can I confess something? Sometimes I’m the one most in need of a reminder about the virtue of forgiveness. When I lose my patience with my children, it’s so easy to think, They made me do that! They caused me to sin and get mad. I know, I know. They are children and I am the adult. I need to take responsibility for my own part.

I don’t want to leave my girls with spirits broken, believing they have let me down and they are not in good standing. And I don’t want to stay there myself in my relationship with God, as if my heavenly Father has lost patience with my lack of self-control and so is going to withhold His forgiveness until I can get my act together.

Do you know the feeling? Can you remember feeling you had let your parents down and they hadn’t forgiven you? Or they said they had forgiven you, but you know they hadn’t forgotten?

Here’s the truth about God’s forgiveness: “As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us” (Psalm 103:12).

I am so grateful the Lord is letting this truth sink deep in my very own heart this morning. As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed my sins and mistakes as a mother. If my Creator does this for me, why can’t I do this for my very own children? Or my husband?

My little one was hurt the other night. I kept speaking into her heart and trying to get her to look me in the eyes. As I reassured her of my love, she finally received the message and melted into my arms.

Here’s the challenge of forgiveness for you and me: Do not let go. Do not give up. Do not ever stop pursuing those young hearts. God has never let go of me and you, and He never will.

I pray for grace to fill my heart each day. I want to have compassion and kindness just like my Savior. I want ours to be a home full of forgiveness and unconditional love, a place where my children believe grace is real because they’ve experienced it.

But I also want my kids to know there is only one Person who is perfect, who will never let them down. Mom and Dad will surely try to be perfect; we will try to love unconditionally. But we are going to mess up. Often.

We were never meant to be Jesus to our kids; we were meant to show them Jesus. That’s a vastly different role and set of expectations.

You and I aren’t here to get it right or get it perfect. We are here to keep pointing our children back to Jesus. To help them understand why they need Him. Why He made them. Why He forgave them and how absolutely breathtaking that truth is.

The most wonderful part is that with the Cross came forgiveness for all. It’s a beautiful story worth telling over and over again. And if your family is as imperfect as ours, you’ll have plenty of chances to talk about redemption and forgiveness and grace and love. The ending is always the same. God loves. God saves. God forgives.

I am praying you will read and reread that section and let it fill up your heart – like it did mine.

Now, get ready for a really meaningful hike with your kids. Our Family Cross doesn’t have to be perfect to be meaningful. It’s all about the discussions that follow.


Download and print virtue card for Forgiveness

Download Leader Guide for book

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  1. Courtney I love your book. I am expecially interested in the part where you took the toys out of the kids room. My daughter’s 5th birthday is coming up soon. How do you politely, and with a Christian heart, request no gifts or at the very least, that it be art supplies or books only? Is there a good Bible verse I could include with the request? It’s not exactly the gift of forgiveness but I came across your blog this morning and thought you’d be the perfect person to ask.


    1. AHHH!!! Sorry. Can you tell I was reading your book and Living Well and Spending Less at the same time!?!?! So sorry. Still could you offer words of wisdom on this subject?

  2. Courtney, I can so relate. We had an evening last week that ended with a grumpy mom incident. I rarely raise my voice, but this time I said, “TIME FOR BED” in a scary grump-voice. AHHHHHH, that was it. We were all upset. My 7 year old daughter said, “Mom, I’ll take the blame for what happened tonight.” Of course, this melted my heart. But I said, “You know what? You don’t have to. We all could take blame, but do you know who already took all the blame? Jesus.” And we had a mini-talk about forgiveness and grace, and what Jesus did for us on the cross. Your comment that we don’t have to be perfect, just point our kids to Jesus, really is what I needed to hear to validate this “bad-turned good” parenting moment.

  3. Love what you said . . .
    We were never meant to be Jesus to our kids; we were meant to show them Jesus. That’s a vastly different role and set of expectations.

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