Last week it was Daniel’s birthday (14yo). And though birthday celebrations are all over I thought I’d share with you my year long prayer – a prayer that is kick started with every birthday in my family. As part of celebrating a birthday I write a letter to the birthday person and in that letter I share with them my mother-heart for them. I encourage them in the growth that I have seen over the year and I set forth a heart challenge for them. Whatever this heart-challenge is becomes my prayer for them for the following 12 months. I also create a photo/poster for the walls of our home. This reminds me, and them, of that aspect of their life.
This year I’m praying that Daniel will live a life with virtue. In praying for Daniel, and thinking about this letter coming up, I started to understand virtue more than I had done previously. I began to see that it isn’t just about good character, it is about the influence that your character, and as a Christian your walk with Jesus, has on those around you.
Character First lists some ways to living a life of virtue
- to do what is right and encourage others to do the same
- to guard your eyes, ears, words and thoughts
- to learn to stand alone
- to abstain from anything which might damage or pollute my mind or body
- to treat others as you would want to be treated
This prayer isn’t corrective but rather my wish for them, my prayer for them, this is what I want for them. Over the years some of the things I’ve prayed for are wisdom, creativity, to be true to yourself, to know God’s Word, perseverance, strength & dignity, to be a witness and bear Christ’s name, to rely on God, it’s your choice, stand tall, be gracious.
Over the last few years a popular thing to do in the new year is to choose ‘one word’. The idea is that you will think and ponder and grow in this one word over the year. I have done that for myself – looking at the words “balance” and “listen”. So in a way, this year long prayer I have for my kids, is much the same – one word (or phrase) that I pray my kids will think about, ponder over and grow in throughout the coming year.
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