Praying for your children involves becoming aware of how important your prayers are and then making a practical plan of how to pray for your children during your busy days. Here are some ideas:
Praying for the Kids
Ok, parents of today’s kids…it’s time. It’s time to put down your smart phone, put down your tablet device, put down the remote and do something for the kids. No, this activity does not involve cash, credit or debit cards. Your job performance score does not depend on this, and it will also not affect your credit score, bowling score or fantasy football rankings. The lives of your children, however, depend on it.
What is this activity that I’m referring to? I’m referring to taking time out of your busy day to pray for your kids. Here are some ideas.
1. Take nothing for granted and leave nothing uncovered in prayer following the Biblical example of how Job prayed for his children.
Not much attention is given to the first chapter from the book of Job. In the very first chapter Job, a righteous man before God, prayed for his children. The description is given as follows:
“There was a man in the country of Uz named Job. He was a man of perfect integrity, who feared God and turned away from evil. He had seven sons and three daughters.”
“His sons used to take turns having banquets at their homes. They would send an invitation to their three sisters to eat and drink with them. Whenever a round of banqueting was over, Job would send [for his children] and purify them, rising early in the morning to offer burnt offerings for all of them. For Job thought: “Perhaps my children have sinned, having cursed God in their hearts.” This was Job’s regular practice.” (Job 1:1-2,4-5, HCSB)
Here is a father praying on a regular basis for his adult children. As a righteous man, a man who feared God, who the Bible says lived with perfect integrity, Job found it important to pray for his kids. I would imagine that his children lived with less than perfect integrity. Job had no idea if his children sinned or not. He did not take any chances and went ahead and prayed for them and their sin. Job made no assumption that his children were doing just fine without him. Job did not make the assumption that his children had a party and did nothing wrong. Job did not make the assumption that since his children were hanging out with siblings and friends there was no way anyone did anything wrong.
Sound familiar? Too many times parents give their children too much latitude, too much of the leash, too much freedom…and the children do not know what to do with that freedom and the situation takes a turn down the path of sin. Taking nothing for granted, leaving nothing uncovered by prayer, Job prayed for his children as a regular practice.
Why should you do this prayer practice? If God deemed it important enough to place in the Bible, then it must have some importance. God puts this in the context of the story of Job and places it at the beginning of the story. We should look at it from that perspective. You may feel that you are living an upright life. You walk the narrow path. You seek to follow the Lord with all your heart, soul, mind and strength. This one thing may be lacking is praying for your children.
2. Spend time in prayer with God about how to raise your children.
Many people can quote this verse from the writings of the Apostle Paul to the Ephesian church:
“Children, obey your parents as [you would] the Lord, because this is right. Honor your father and mother, which is the first commandment with a promise, so that it may go well with you and that you may have a long life in the land.” (Ephesians 6:1-3, HCSB)
Does it not make sense that if you want your children to obey you, honor you and respect you that you should spend time with God on how to raise them?
Let me put it this way: What do you want your answer to be when God asks you to explain what you did to raise your children in the fear and knowledge of the Lord? Do you give your children a reason to honor you? Do your children know that you are in a relationship with the God of this universe? Do you want your children to have a long life? I want to be able to say that I did all that I could and that I prayed for my children on a regular basis. Just like Job.
3. Make a daily plan of when and what to pray for your children.
So…what to do. Here is what Kelly and I do. We pray for the children every day, including two specific times a day. As a couple we pray in the morning before going to our respective jobs, and then at night before bed. We pray for their safety, for their rest, for God’s peace to reign in their lives, and we pray for their spiritual safety. Yes…their spiritual safety.
Dear reader, Satan wants your kids. He wants to draw them away from you and God. Pray against the evil one and those assigned to your kids. That enemy is real and comes in many forms. The Apostle Paul said that we are at war in the spiritual realm and should pray as such. The battle for the lives and souls of your children takes place when you enter the throne room of the King and plead for His mercy to be shown in protecting your children.
My daughters know that some boy is going to come along and want to be the “boyfriend”. The girls also know that daddy says he will bend in half any boy who breaks their heart. They know that I really can’t do that, but my girls know that they are safe with me. My son…well, he knows it, too, but I cannot translate video game lingo into this prayer idea for the average parent to understand.
4. Pray for your children during the day when you find yourself thinking about them.
As we are out in the world in our daily lives, we pray for the children as thoughts of them come to mind. A passing thought may trigger a thought of a certain child, which then leads to a short prayer for that child. Not hard or time consuming. In fact, it should be more the norm for every Christian parent.
What are your children worth? How much time? I always say to my wife Kelly that I wish I had more time with the kids. (For that I get a pat on the back and a reminder that she thinks I’m a good dad.) Since I cannot be with my kids 24/7 I pray to the One who is.
5. What to pray for your children.
Pray for your kids to have a good day. Pray for God’s peace to reign in their lives. Pray for their physical and spiritual safety. Take a stand and pray against the evil one on their behalf. If you don’t, who will? Pray for the friends of your children. Maybe one of those friends will come over on a random visit and wind up giving their life to Christ. We had that happen earlier this year. Pray for the person God is preparing as a husband or wife to your child. Pray for God to go before your children to the jungle that is the school system. Pray that your children will not only know who God is, but that they will come to know Him.
1 Thessalonians 5:17 says: “Pray constantly.”
Include your kids.
Copyright David Shelton 2012 All rights reserved.