941) A Father’s Biggest Impression

Randy and Angela Alcorn

By Randy Alcorn, November 6, 2015 blog at:  www.epm.org

     Some years ago, I sat with my daughters at a father/daughter banquet at our church.  Someone at the table asked my youngest daughter, Angela, what I’d done that made the biggest impression on her.  I had no idea what she would say, but of course I hoped for something spectacular.

     I’ll never forget what she shared because it was so powerful to me.  She said, “I remember one time when dad was harsh with me. Then a few minutes later he came back into my room, and he cried and asked my forgiveness.  I’ve never forgotten that.”

     That’s what Angie remembered as having the most impact on her— something I had actually done wrong, and then asked her forgiveness for.  I thought, Isn’t that interesting?  It shows how being a good example isn’t limited to doing great and magnificent things.  Sometimes it’s when we admit we did wrong things.

     This is God’s grace— He can redeem even our failures!  (Provided we recognize and confess them.)  Saying “I’m sorry, please forgive me,” may teach your children more than you would have by never failing, and far more than pretending you never fail.

     How humbling and also encouraging to know that parents who admit their shortcomings don’t lose their children’s trust.  They gain it.


I John 1:8-9  —  If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.  If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.

Colossians 3:12-14  —  Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.  Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone.  Forgive as the Lord forgave you.  And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.

Colossians 3:20  —  Fathers, do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged.

Ephesians 6:4  —  Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.

James 5:16  —   Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.  The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.



Forgive me, Lord, my sins:  the sins of my youth, the sins of the present; the sins I laid upon myself in an ill pleasure, the sins I cast upon others in an ill example; the sins which are manifest to all the world, the sins which I have labored to hide from my acquaintances, from my own conscience, and even from my memory; my crying sins and my whispering sins, my ignorant sins and my willful sins; sins against my superiors, equals, servants, and loved ones; sins against myself, my own body, and my own soul; sins against thee, O heavenly Father, O merciful Son, O blessed Spirit of God.  Amen.