By Meg Bucher, Crosswalk.com
“…let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings…” Hebrews 10:22
Parenting often drives us to our knees in prayer. When it seems impossible to control another human being that’s because it is. Exhaustion over the things the world has already thrown at our children drives us to the end of ourselves. We, too, are only human, in constant need of our great God. He hears every prayer and knows every heart. Prayer is the most powerful thing we can do with our children and on their behalf. “Believers are granted confident, faith-assured access to the throne of God through Jesus-“ wrote Chad Ashby for desiringGod, “assured access to the throne of God through Jesus- which means we are able to come to God on behalf of others.”
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A Prayer for My Children's Safety
This world is a terrifying place to raise a child. Help us to see the world through Your eyes and surrender our fears and anxieties to You daily. When we worry about our children’s safety at school, their friends’ houses, walking home, at their extracurricular activities, and once they're out into the world to live their own adult lives … remind us of Your love for them and care for them. Please, Jesus, walk with them through every fire they face and protect them from harm and danger. Keep them physically safe, Lord. Protect them from the dangers of this world, from ill-intended people and those who wish to harm them or take advantage of them. Divinely intervene, Lord, when they are in harm’s way.
Protect our children from the dangers they cannot see coming and those they willingly walk into. Bless the homes they visit and live in when they leave ours. Keep those structures sound and safe from fire, flood, wind, and intruders. As they sleep, in our home or if they are grown and on their own, keep any and all evil at bay. Guard their minds against nightmares and disturbing dreams. Give them a peaceful and restful sleep nightly. Though our human bodies need sleep and have limits, we know You are limitless. May Your army of angels guard our children while they are awake and while they sleep.
For our children’s safety, we pray.
In Jesus’ Name,
A Prayer for My Children's Wellness
We praise You for our health. For, if we have awakened to breathe today, You have a purpose for us. This is a day You have made, and we will rejoice and be glad in it. We give thanks to You! The Author of all life, our Healer, Abba Father. Thank You for the advances in modern medicine and holistic healthcare. Thank you for the entire community of caregivers that provide diagnosis, treatment, and healing for our ailments, both short and long term. Bless and equip the doctors who care for our children with wisdom to diagnose and treat symptoms.
We confess the worry we have over our children’s health. We are acutely aware of the fragility of life and the disease and sickness in the world. Only You know the number of our days Father and those of our children. But we ask you to protect their wellness. Bless our children and keep them healthy. Heal their bodies from the illness and ailment only You can see. Protect them from invisible viruses and strengthen their immune systems to ward off strains of the flu, colds, and allergies. When their bones break and muscles tear and strain, bless them with hasty healing, and patience during the process.
Bless and guard the health of their minds, Father. Protect their mental health and give children who are old enough the courage to ask for help when they know something is not right. Give them the wisdom and perspective, sometimes beyond their years, to talk to us, a school nurse, or doctor about what doesn’t feel right. May we as parents have the wisdom, insight, observance, and knowledge to see signs our children might be suffering from anxiety, depression, or other mental illnesses, and seek treatment for them at the first signs. Bless the counselors and mental health professionals that care for our children. Strengthen them, as they counsel and comfort us. Thank You for the gifts of first responders, counselors, and medical professionals, Lord.
In Jesus’ Name,
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A Prayer for My Children's Spiritual Growth
Author of all life, we know each human being has a purpose to serve for Your Kingdom. We are all created in Your image, and as Your children, we long for Your presence. As our children grow, we pray they find their way to Your feet, Father. Through Jesus, we pray they live life to the fullest, the way You intend for them to. Thank You for the Holy Spirit, who remains with us always, because of the sacrifice of Your Son, Christ Jesus. Thank You for the opportunity everyone has to come to You through Christ. We pray for our children to have their lives transformed by You; Jesus, help them accept You as Lord of their lives and follow You throughout their days all the way home to heaven.
Bless our children with a sensitivity to Your Spirit, God, and hearts softened to hear You speak into their lives. Let them see Your evidence in creation and allow them to know that behind every sunrise and sunset their Author and Creator smiles back at them. May they know Your comfort; we are thankful that You are close to the brokenhearted, that you hear every prayer and know their hearts even better than they, for You knit them in the womb. Father, may our children know You, accept You, and follow You all the days of their lives. Bless their lives with good, godly friends, who follow Christ. May their significant others and spouses be kind and follow Jesus. Let their lives shine with Your radiant love, Jesus.
In Jesus’ Name,
Does the Bible Tell Us How to Protect Our Children?
“Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.” Proverbs 22:6
This world forces us to be astute in the everyday measures we take to assure our children’s safety. But the world has proven to throw us many situations that remain out of our control no matter how prepared and devout we are: school shootings, kidnappings, illnesses that attack youth, and human trafficking. Children suffer at the hands of the world’s cruelty, every day. It’s our job as parents to make them aware of the things that could harm them. We wouldn’t let them touch a hot stove, walk into traffic, or jump off a table without at least hollering a warning. It’s our duty as parents to speak life into our children. Remember, God doesn’t need our help. He allows us to participate in the great joys of it.
The Bible instructs us to lead our children to the Father’s feet. He is their Defender and Protector, as He is, ours. We can do this by praying with our children, and by teaching them to pray. We can teach them who God is and how He loves them. They can learn to listen for His voice through His Word as we read Scripture with them. Paul wrote, “Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord. Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged.” (Colossians 3:20-21 ESV) When my children look at me with a quizzical brow when debating where my wisdom comes from, I remind them of what they see me doing each morning. “Reading your Bible,” they’ll say. All wisdom comes from God.
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How to Trust God with Your Children
“Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23
We can lead our children to God’s feet, by teaching them how to pray and reading Scripture with them. But we must not try to control them; we need to trust God's sovereignty over our lives and our children's. Our duty as parents never ceases, it matures. “Parenting that is ‘of the Lord’ is dependent on grace,” wrote Elyse Fitzpatrick, “Because salvation is of the Lord (Jonah 2:9 NKJV), we know that we are incapable of transforming our children’s hearts or making them believe.”
Our children are made in God's image, just as we are. He has good plans for their lives, as He does for ours. “If our children are doing well spiritually, they are not out of the woods,” wrote Jon Bloom, “If they are not doing well, their story is not over.” Our mistakes will not necessarily become their mistakes, if we are humble enough to talk to them about them, age appropriately. They can learn from the answered prayers and stories of grace and healing in our lives. How we live our lives and love the people in them, creates an example for our children about the love of Christ. Despite all our examples, we must remember that only God can move another human heart. We can trust God and pray continually … about everything!
No parent is perfect, and our children must be taught to seek God on their own. “The relationship between parent and child is centered on their common devotion to the Lord,” the IVP New Testament Commentary explains. This is how we trust God with our children, by recognizing how infinitely He cares for us and provides wisdom daily and by slowly stepping back out of the intense and hands-on years of their lives and realizing He’s already doing that for them, too. As our children get older, our wisdom will always be needed, but we begin to journey together in a different way, able to talk about our faith together. No one walk with the Lord is the same. As a parent, we have to give our babies back to God every day, lest we take control over what we think their lives should look like, opposed to the unimaginably good plans God has for them.
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