Blog  /    /  Podcast Ep. 10- The Power of Saying “I’m Sorry.”


Podcast Ep. 10- The Power of Saying “I’m Sorry.”
Grace Based Families

00:00 / 40:16

As a parent, I say “I’m sorry” a lot. Probably every day. Multiple times a day.

James 5:16. It writes, “Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed.”

Here are three powerful reasons to make saying you’re sorry a regular part of your parenting strategy.

  1. It’s God’s prescription for a broken world.

When I’m wronged, there is a longing in me for the person who wronged me to apologize. This is not a selfish impulse, but rather a God-given desire for relationships to be mended. Our kids feel that same desire. When they have been wronged, there is something in them (whether they know how to vocalize it or not) that longs for that wrong to be made right. They know when you’ve treated them unfairly. They know when you’ve made a mistake toward them.

As a parent, I get the opportunity to take the initiative in mending the pain I caused in my children. I get to meet that longing of reconciliation. If my kids had a fever, I wouldn’t withhold medicine. When I’ve done something wrong to my kids, withholding an apology is no different than not giving them Tylenol when their temperature is rising. Confession, repentance, and forgiveness are the prescription God gives for broken relationships, and as a Dad I get the privilege of caring for my kids in that way.

2. It’s a natural way to teach them an unnatural response.

It is not natural to own our mistakes. I know for me, my gut is always to defend and justify my actions, which usually only serves to blame the offended for the offense.

The irony is that I expect my kids to treat owning mistakes and apologizing like it’s the natural first response, and let them have it when its not. If I’m not making a regular practice of apologizing to my children but instead constantly justifying my actions to them, why would I expect them to do the same? We get to model, naturally, the unnatural response of saying, “I’m Sorry.”

3. Because it’s the only honest way forward.

One of the greatest weights I carry is the fact that my kids see the worst of me on a regular basis. Since we’re most comfortable at home, we let down our guard and can be, candidly, pretty nasty. This is a weight I feel because I know that my kids will learn more about faith at home, watching how my wife and I act, than they will at church or any other religious context. If I could be perfect, I would. But that’s not really a possibility.

Because of that, the regular practice of confessing my sin to my kids and seeking their forgiveness is the only honest way to model a practical faith at home. Mistakes aren’t necessarily the enemy of faith, but hypocrisy is. My hope is that my kids will grow to walk through their own faith with honesty, which means walking through it as James writes, confessing and forgiving one another.

Resources and Links:

-To learn more about the Five Languages of Apology, see Dr. Chapman’s book here.

-Read the blog post that inspired this episode.

-For more information about Family Matters, go to

-Questions or comments? Email us at

-Follow us on social media:

Karis Kimmel Murray is the author of Grace Based Discipline: How to Be at Your Best When Your Kids Are at Their Worst and the Creative Director of Family Matters®, a ministry who’s internationally hosted parenting and marriage events, radio and television broadcasts, articles, videos, website and best-selling books (written by Karis’ parents and Family Matters’ founders Dr. Tim and Darcy Kimmel,) Grace Based Parenting and Grace Filled Marriage, have been used by God to transform tens of thousands of families into instruments of His restoration and reformation.
Karis writes and speaks for Family Matters as a voice to the next generation of parents. Karis is co-host of The Family Matters Minute, a nationally syndicated one-minute radio segment heard by millions of listeners every weekday.
Karis lives in Scottsdale, Arizona with her husband Mike, their two teenage daughters and a ragamuffin menagerie of pets.