Our family with four little ones gathered to pray in the evening. In cold weather, we burned logs in the brick fireplace. The kids gathered to sit around the living room on the furniture or down on the braided rug holding their Bibles. We'd open by singing beautiful spiritual songs together. Then, each child selected a scripture and read to the others.
After, we prayed spontaneously one by one. Monica (age 8) often blessed her pony, Valentine. Brian (7) and Emily (6) prayed for the other animals on our family farm and for our friends. Even little Joanna (3) prayed cute lines of heartfelt requests. Mommy and Daddy would follow with prayer and finish with a Blessing, laying hands on each child.
“May our Heavenly Father bless you in the wonder
and power of his love and give you a peaceful sleep
in the Name of Jesus. Amen.”
"Daddy, can you teach me to pray in tongues?"
One evening, little Brian, age 7, in his pajamas jumped up in the living room and came to my chair.
"You don't learn how to pray in tongues," I answered him. "God gives it to you as a gift. But I can ask for you to receive the Holy Spirit. Close your eyes and raise your hands."
Mary, washing dishes in the kitchen, heard the innocence of her son's question. She wiped her hands on a towel and leaned in the doorway to watch. My wife has a gift of expectant faith! I gently laid my hands on Brian and prayed for the gift of the Holy Spirit. Immediately, out of his mouth, Brian prayed in the gift of tongues.
"It was so beautiful," said Mary, "such a testimony to God's faithfulness to the prayer and faith of a little child."
“Me too, Daddy!” Monica came over.
She too, received the gift of the Holy Spirit. The genuine gift of tongues is really the Holy Spirit praying within you. In your own spirit, he impresses you with what he is saying. It's so clearly seen in innocent children.
"That's when you gave me my Bible for Christmas," said Mary. "And I started reading through it from beginning to end. I began studying, assimilating, and memorizing scriptures." Mary's Bible has since worn a little ragged. I don't think she'll ever let it go.
Life was very simple and very blessed on our little farm.
A lovely evangelist named Shirley held evening revivals in the local Assembly of God Church for a time. She brought many townspeople to the Lord with her anointed preaching and melodious spiritual songs. This greatly affected the children's spirituality at exactly the right time in their lives. One by one, each of our four children walked up and gave their lives to Jesus on their own. Shirley's singing ministry blessed us deeply.
As I said, “It was a house of prayer in a place of healing.”