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Little Sins

Little Sins

She avoided eye contact and burst into tears at the slightest reprimand. Eleven years young and navigating the middle-school minefield, her emotions were on edge—but the recent behavior was unusual for my easy-going daughter.

Attempts to question or console were rebuffed. So I waited. And prayed.

Several evenings later she approached, fingers clenched and tears pooling. “Mama?”

In minutes, my daughter spilled her heart and confessed something she had done wrong months ago. Surprised, I asked her to repeat the confession. Sure enough, she was distraught over a misdeed from the previous school semester.

I must be honest. In my heart, I smiled a little. How precious is this? She’s so sensitive, she feels bad about this little bitty…


And that’s when mama came under conviction. Was I thinking my daughter’s sin was “little bitty?” Was I prepared to undermine the work of the Holy Spirit in her life? How easy it would be to brush aside her angst and tell her not to worry about it—the past is the past.

But my little girl was struggling. She was uncomfortable. There was a barrier between her and her Lord. If I smoothed it over and made light of her sin would it harden her to the Holy Spirit’s whisper?

The next time her heart was troubled, would His voice be easier to ignore?

This mama’s heart broke a little. As my daughter confessed to God, I did my own confessing. The moment was a time of renewal and restoration—an opportunity for each of us to grow.

Acts 3:19 states, “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.” And 1 John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

Mother and daughter needed the times of refreshing that only repentance would bring. We needed the reminder that our God is faithful—He will always forgive and restore a heart filled with genuine sin-sorrow.

After prayers and hugs, our lighter hearts brought us closer to each other and to new spiritual depths in our faith-walk.

Are we guilty of smoothing over the “little” sins in our children’s lives?

By: Leigh Ann Thomas is the author of Ribbons, Lace, and Moments of Grace—Inspiration for the Mother of the Bride (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas). A columnist for, she has also written for The Write Conversation, Southern Writers Suite T, and Power for Living. She is a contributing author in ten books and her work is included in two editions of Southern Writers Magazines’ Best Short Stories. Leigh Ann blogs at where she encourages others to keep a Jesus heart in an upside-down world.

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  1. My goodness, Leigh – beautiful, convicting, full of hope. Thank you! This mama needed to hear your words of wisdom tonight.

    • Aw, thanks, Meredith. That experience has stayed close to my heart. I so want my children’s hearts to stay sensitive to the Holy Spirit. It’s easy to forget that I should crave that for myself as well. Thanks for your encouragement!

  2. Beautiful! I needed this, as well. ♡

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