Tag Archives: praying for family

Teach your Children To Pray

I can remember memorizing the 23rd Psalm and the Lord’s Prayer (Matthew 6:9-13; Luke 11:2-4 ) at an early age. I did not fully understand what the words meant. Years later, after I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior, the words made sense. Both of these passages can be used to teach older children to pray.

First, the Bible is clear on our role as one who should pray. Jesus modeled prayer life and gave instruction to His followers.

But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen.
(
Mat 6:6 NIV)

Focus On The Family has published a short summary of the prayer life on Jesus. The summary lists Bible passages demonstrating Jesus praying for others, with others, alone, in nature, as a marathon runner. He also prayed regularly, with heartfelt conviction, based on knowledge of God and Biblical truths. He prayed with persistence and expectation.

The disciples saw Jesus praying so they asked Him to teach them about praying. (Luke 11:1). In response to their request, Jesus taught them what we now call, ‘The LORD’s Prayer”. The words are important, but the model or pattern is more important.

These are the words I memorized many years ago –

Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread.

And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil:
For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. (Mat 6:6-13, KJV)

Perhaps it would be easier for your children to learn this prayer in a modern translation such as the International Children’s Bible

Our Father in heaven,
we pray that your name will always be kept holy.
We pray that your kingdom will come.

We pray that what you want will be done, here on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us the food we need for each day.

Forgive the sins we have done,
just as we have forgiven those who did wrong to us.
And do not cause us to be tested;
but save us from the Evil One.’
The kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours forever.
Amen.

Using the following model or outline will help your children understand the essential elements of prayer

Essential Elements of Prayer

Our Father in heaven,
we pray that your name will always be kept holy.
Praising God
(Ps 150:6)
We pray that your kingdom will come.
We pray that what you want will be done, here on earth as it is in heaven.
Accepting God’s Authority
(Neh 9:6)
Give us the food we need for each day.
Asking for God’s Care
(Luke 12:24)
Forgive the sins we have done, just as we have forgiven those who did wrong to us.
Asking for God’s Forgiveness
(1 John 1:9)
And do not cause us to be tested; but save us from the Evil One.’
Asking for God’s Guidance
(Ps 25:4-5)
The kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours forever.
Amen.

Recognizing God as Ruler of All Things
(1 Tim 6:15)

In an article from the Huffington Post, Joyce Meyer summarized prayer like this:

The main thing we need to understand is (and don’t underestimate a child’s ability to grasp this), it’s not the length or the eloquence or the posture of our prayer that matters to God. It’s the sincerity of our heart. He doesn’t expect us all to pray the same way — He just wants to communicate and fellowship with us,

Teach your children that prayer is a language of the heart. Whether the language is spoken or remains silent, prayer gives us a tool to express our inner thoughts and emotions. Prayer also provides a means for us to support others, even those persons we have never met. Prayer is our spe­cial connection with God.

Teach your children to pray and serve Jesus – before someone teaches them to serve themselves and the world.

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Praying For Your Family

Part two of preparing to stand in the gap is praying for your family: taking on the role of intercessor. This is something you can do individually or together as a family.

My tendency is to listen to what my family is saying and pray for them as they reveal a need. As an example, my youngest daughter has had a horrible time keeping her 8-year-old car operational. When we were living together, it was easy for me to be there for the rescue. Now that we are miles apart, she has had to deal with these issues alone – except I could pray for a solution. I did not have to ask her how I should pray for her needs when she already indirectly told me.

Ultimately, she made the decision to purchase a newer vehicle. While I remained silent, I did pray for her to listen to her heart since I knew God would speak to her. He did and she found a great deal on a newer vehicle.

One ways to find out the needs of your family is to have a casual conversation during dinner time. We did that when our daughter and grandson lived with us for a few years when we lived in Corpus Christi, TX. Someone at the table would ask another person, “What did you do today?” That usually triggered a short conversation that often times revealed needs.

If you are still at loss on how to pray for your family, here are some pretty cool ideas I found from iMom, a parenting website.

10 Ways To Pray For Your Family

© 2015 iMOM. All Rights Reserved. Family First, All Pro Dad, iMOM, and Family Minute with Mark Merrill are registered trademarks.
(Click title to access a printable version of this list.)

FOR UNITY Pray that your family will be bonded together and protected from division and conflict within. Psalm 133:1
FOR LOVE Pray that each member of the family has a genuine love for others. 1 Peter 4:8
FOR PURITY OF HEART AND MIND Pray that your family’s hearts and minds are protected from the negative influences and sin in the world. Proverbs 4:23
FOR COURAGE IN THE FACE OF ADVERSITY Pray that your family will persevere with courage through hard times. Be strong and courageous. Deuteronomy 31:6
FOR WISDOM Pray that each member of your family would walk in wisdom at every age. James 1:5
FOR OBEDIENCE Pray that your children would have obedient hearts toward you as
parents, and that all of you would seek to obey God.
Psalm 128:1
FOR GOD’S GUIDANCE Pray for God’s guidance in all of your family’s plans and decisions. Proverbs 16:9
FOR A GENEROUS HEART Pray that your family would be gracious and generous to others. 1 Timothy 6:18
FOR A CHANCE TO BLESS OTHERS Pray that your family would seek & respond to chances to serve and bless others. Proverbs 11:25
FOR OTHERS TO SEE GOD IN YOUR FAMILY Pray that your family’s example would point others toward God. Matthew 5:16

Whatever approach you choose, start now. Ask God to guard your time and guard your heart. I can assure you Satan does not want you to do this (John 10:10). He will throw obstacles in your path to prevent you from carrying out this step. Leave me a comment and I will happily pray for you as well. You can do this privately by clicking Contact Us. Together we can celebrate the joy God will bring.

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