Prayer is a powerful force in a Christianís life. Prayer allows us to have an intimate relationship with the Lord. The most significant relationship that we will ever develop is with the Lord and as Christian parents we should pass on this treasured gift to our children. Of course it is important for our children to know they can always come to us with any issue they may be facing, but what is even more important is they know without doubt to turn to God with all their burdens. Teaching our children to develop a relationship with God is the absolute best gift we can pass on to them. As a parent you can encourage and foster this relationship by being an example to them. Here are a few ideas on how to make prayer a daily part of their life.
Never Too Early to Pray
When I had my daughter, I would pray aloud even when she was a baby. When she became a little older I taught her a childrenís prayer. She is now five years old and prays not only before meals and bedtime but anytime she has the desire to do so. Prayer is for all ages and teaching your children to pray at a young age is a wonderful start for their own development as a follower of Christ. Start by saying prayers before every meal, before bed, and thanking God for the new day. Soon prayer will become part of their daily routine.
Family Prayer Time
A family that prays together stays together. Prayer should be a part of your familyís everyday routine. Having family prayer time develops a strong bond between the Lord and your family. Dinner time doesnít have to be the only time you pray together. Set aside time during the week to pray together as a family. If you have a prayer list from church, gather as a family and pray for those who are ill or in need of prayer. This is a wonderful way to teach your child how to become a prayer warrior and the power of prayer. Also let your children hear you praying for them, if they see your faith in prayer it will encourage them on their own prayer journey.
If your family is facing a hardship or is in conflict, gather together and pray for the Lord to give your family guidance, strength, and wisdom. Children will learn through example to rely on the Lord for everything. When they become adults and have their own families they will remember to turn to God to give their family strength when they face tribulations.
Pray Without Ceasing
In this world the influences our children face are downright frightening. Teach your children to pray in all circumstances. If theyíre facing peer pressure teach them to turn to God and ask for guidance. Kids need assured God is always there for them and protecting them. Teaching them to turn to God for wisdom enables them to make good decisions. Every day before my daughter goes to preschool we say a prayer asking the Lord to protect her and keep her on the right path. My hope is that when she is older sheíll continue to pray even when Iím not around and develops her own relationship with God.
God Answers Prayers
As Christians we have faith that our prayers are heard by God. We also know we donít always receive what we pray for because it isnít Godís will. Children may have a hard time understanding that, and in the worst case scenario if a prayer isnít answered they may lose faith in the power of prayer. Therefore, it is important to communicate to your children that prayers are answered according to our Fatherís will. God knows what is best for us and our desires and wants may not be his best for us.
Prayer is how we communicate with God. Teach your children to develop an unshakable relationship with God through prayer. Help them build their spiritual foundation early on in life so they can follow on the path of Jesus throughout their life. Be an example to them by turning to the Lord in all circumstances. Our behavior sends messages to our children. Make sure your behavior condones prayer, obedience, and faith. Pray with them and for them continually having faith that God will give you wisdom and discernment. Children need God in their life at all ages. When they learn to pray and to hand everything over to God youíre preparing them for the spiritual warfare weíre faced with every day. Protect them by teaching them the power of prayer.