If you want to pray for your kids intentionally think of different ways to be reminded – I find a focus for each year and have a visual reminder to pray.
Podcast Show Notes – 02
I Pray all Year for One Thing for Each of My Kids – Each birthday I start a year long prayer focus for each of my kids.
3 Things for Parents to Pray for (includes BONUS DOWNLOAD) Three things for parents to have on their prayer list; regardless of what is happening in your family life you will want to ask God for these three things.
The Blog: Pray for our Kids – Intentionally
At the beginning of each year I take time to pray for my kids, not that I’m not praying for them all year long, but I pray for a specific theme, concern, or blessing for them. Many people do a ‘Word’ for the year for themselves. I myself have chosen ‘prepare’ to think about this year. In a sense my praying for my kids at this time, is much along these lines. Every year I have done this, God has been faithful and given me something to continue to pray about for each of my kids throughout the year.
I often share this theme/topic/prayer with my kids on their birthday. It forms the foundation, or direction, of a letter I write to them though I share other encouragements as well. To be honest – I don’t know what my kids think of this – whether they value it or not, but that is beside the point. I pray for them because I love them.
Mary, the mother of Jesus is an intriguing role model as a mother. We really don’t know much about her inner heart but we are told that she ‘pondered’ things in her heart. She took the things that the angel had told her, she took the incredible things that had happened to her and pondered them. She kept them hidden in her heart – she believed God, and yet she didn’t know what everything meant.
We can have these same ponderings. When we pray for our children it doesn’t mean we get all the answers, it doesn’t mean we understand what is going to happen. Praying isn’t looking into a crystal ball – praying is a conversation with Jesus. And Jesus loves our kids more than we do!
Why I pray for my Kids
I was reading about Jesus and when he asked the disciples to pray with him in the garden of Gethsemane.
The disciples didn’t understand what Jesus was going through so they let their guard down and fell asleep. I wondered what would have happened if they prayed?
One thing we know for sure – the outcome would not have changed. The soldiers would have still come and Jesus would have still died. Jesus came for that very purpose.
Jesus didn’t want them to pray to change the circumstances (though he wished he could). He wanted them to stand with him and support him and be with him in heart for what he was about to go through.
But they didn’t understand and they fell asleep.
I do wonder if they had prayed that night if their hearts would have changed? Would they have tussled with what was going to happen if they had been in prayer? Would have they have gained insight, peace or conviction? We just don’t know – because they didn’t pray.
We know Jesus was strengthened by praying that night. So we can only assume the disciples would have been too.
We also know that we are to pray. Jesus sits beside his father interceding on our behalf. He calls us, he invites us to join him in prayer.
The lesson I have learnt from thinking about this is – when we pray our circumstances may not change, but our hearts are strengthened for the journey ahead.
What to pray for as a Parent
So when I pray I’m praying for two things.
- That my heart is strengthened for the journey of parenting. I may not be able to change the circumstances my kids are in, I may not be able to control the choices they make, but Jesus has promised me grace for the situations I find myself in and as I keep my eyes on him, as I keep my mind and heart in conversation with him, I can walk through the situations that my kids take me.
- Secondly, I pray for my kid’s heart to be strengthened for their journey. I want them to know God, to love him, and to have him as their God. I pray that God will speak directly to their heart and that they will respond.
Of course I want every blessing imaginable for my kids – I want them to have a good life, and I have a preconceived idea of what that good life looks like. But God’s good life and mankind’s good life are two different things.
So as I pray for my kids I want to pray for the things that Jesus is praying for.
- That they will respond to the call of the Holy Spirit
- That they will have a love for God’s word
- That they will have the grace to go forward and be strong in whatever circumstance they face
Remembering to Pray
Do you remember to pray for your kids? I know I often shoot up that arrow prayer – Help God my kid needs help! Help God I need help with my kid! But I also want to pray for them at other times as well.
Another thing I do with this ‘theme, or word’ I pray about for my kids is I make a birthday poster. You can read about that here and scroll down as I’ve included a few samples at the end of this post. I make this poster for each child – they are all are on our dining room wall. On that poster I choose words that reflect this heart prayer for the year. This way when I look at my dining room wall, I am reminded to pray for my kids’ heart.
Do you have something that reminds you to pray for your kids? Maybe a photo or a diary prompt, or you might pray whenever you do something – I know I’ve read of women who pray for their family as they do the ironing (doesn’t work for me cause my kids do their own ironing – but you get the idea!) Love to hear what prompts you to pray if you can leave a comment at the end of this post for all to be encouraged.
Throughout the week I share with other blogs – check out my Link ups and Party page