So you’re looking for the absolutely best gift you can give your kids? I have just the thing.
My daughter celebrated her 7th birthday today. And like most parents, I want to give her something that she will love and get excited about.
Just like you want for your child.
Yet, I’ve learned over the years, that what our children need from us is nothing that is store-bought. Yes, it is our time. Yes, it is our love. But it’s also……our prayers!
THE GIFT THAT KEEPS GIVING
I recently listened to Oprah’s interview of Tyler Perry on her Master Class podcast. If you have not yet subscribed to her podcast, I highly recommend them.
This recent one really struck a chord with me though. Perry spoke about his childhood filled with abuse, anger and severe depression. It’s pretty heavy stuff.
But the thing I loved especially was when he said that the one thing his mom gave him that he is thankful for today is a “faith in God”. It is that trust and faith in God that helped him overcome so many difficult circumstances and propelled him to do things that makes him the mega-star he is today.
Wow, I thought, I want that for my kids. I want my kids to say that about me. I want to give them something that will anchor them and help them when the hard times come. So that even if the “mountain fall into the ocean depths; [or] the seas roar and rage and the hills are shaken by violence” (Psalm 46:2-3), they will have an anchor to keep them steady.
I think the best gift I can give my kids, is the gift of prayer and the gift of knowing a God who loves them and who will help them whenever they call to Him.
Not a mama? You can pray for your nieces and nephews, cousins, friends – it doesn’t matter. Just pray.
I am here, in the place, writing you this because I have a mom who prays for me. I am completely convinced that I would not be where I am today if not for those prayers.
WHY I WISH I HAD STARTED EARLIER
I have written and re-written this post so many times, I have lost count. I wanted it to be perfect. I prayed that as you read it that you will be inspired to close your eyes and say a silent, heart-felt prayer for your babies.
Did you know that you, my friend have so much power inside you and with your words you can change so so much?
I wish that I could sit with you as you read this post and you could tell me what you think of it. That we can share stories and I can explain that my only goal is to encourage, and hopefully inspire you in your motherhood and in your faith journey.
So I wrote, deleted, edited, corrected and re-read every word. And then I remembered that this post is not about me. My only part is to share my faith with you, to tell you about how awesome our Father is and how much He loves you.
The way it inspires you, I leave entirely in His hands.
So I stopped worrying about whether I’ve dotted every i and crossed every t. Instead I am going to offer this post up from my heart to yours.
Because mothering is hard. I doubt myself all the time. I sometimes lay awake worrying about my children, my husband, or my family. It just comes with the territory.
We worry not just about our children’s future but also about right now. This very moment. We worry that they are not eating enough nutritious food, that they don’t have enough friends or if they will grow up to be shunned by their peers because they haven’t showered in a week, (or is this just in my house? 🙂)
Worrying is what we sometimes do best.
But God’s has told us to not “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7
Those are very specific instructions and I think they were written especially for us. Isn’t it great to know that there is a power larger than ourselves that we can entrust our children to.
I believe that being a mother is a calling and a blessing from God and that God in all His goodness will give us all we need to accomplish this vocation called motherhood. And we all want the same thing – to raise kind, loving, happy people who are a blessing to our family and to those around them.
So instead of constantly throwing our hand up in worry and defeat, instead of wringing our hands and rubbing our temples wondering if we are doing a good job or if our kids will be okay, lets try instead to entrust our children to God’s powerful, loving and extraordinary care through prayer.
In all honesty I too am learning to lean more on Christ. I do not want you to ever think that I have this mothering thing down pat. I am learning, just like you and each day God is helping me along the way.
I recognize that on my own accord I have so little power. I control nothing but my own self; even my very breath is directed by my Father. Why then should I not lean on Him with the things I love the most?
We need only ask for His Divine help and He will freely give it.
I admit, I had not been as consistent about praying for my children in the past. So this is a great reminder for me as well.
A reminder to make sure I pray more than I worry.
I wish I had stumbled upon this post when my first son was born. During his delivery, his heart rate dropped dramatically. There I was hooked up to the machine that monitored my contractions and all of a sudden the emergency alarm came on. In flew a nurse who took one look at me and the machine and pressed the red button; the one you never want anyone to press around you. Almost immediately, I was surrounded by a swarm of nurses and doctors as they proceeded to shake my pregnant belly vigorously. His heart rate shot back up and they left me until it happened again one more time and then another time after that.
When my son was finally born, we found out that his umbilical cord was wrapped twice around his neck which caused his heart rate to plummet during contractions. Thank God for protecting him during that time.
I wish I had known more about praying for your children back then. Because if I had, I really believe that my son would not be affected by the spirit of fear and anxiety that was caused my his scary birth.
You might think I’m crazy. And maybe I am. (ha!) But I do wonder how things would be if I had immediately taken my baby in my arms, blessed him in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit and spoke God’s blessing over him.
Would he still be so fearful and anxious today?
Would he struggle so much in school if I had spoken words of healing for the trauma he might have gone through from the very beginning?
If I had replaced the spirit of fear brought on by the few seconds of his lack of oxygen and asked the Spirit to fill him instead with peace, joy and blessings?
When I was pregnant, I would pray constantly for my baby. When he was finally born, I got so caught up in the utter exhaustion of motherhood that at the time I didn’t make room for God.
Thankfully, for me and for you, God is a loving, giving God and He meets us where ever we are. So these days, I pray for my son constantly, all the time, everyday! I pray that God may heal him, protect him and help him to become the person he was created to be. I ask God to remove whatever blockage may be keeping him back and that God my deliver him.So let us all be prayer warriors for our children. We need not live in constant fear and worry. Instead, we can dedicate them to the care of our heavenly Father, who loves our children even more that we do. Click To Tweet
(I still cannot fully wrap my mind around that one but its so true.)
HOW TO START PRAYING FOR YOUR CHILD
You can start today, this very minute, to pray for your children. No matter how young or how old they are; not matter if things are exactly how as you hoped they would be and there is nothing you are concerned about (if so, please tell me your secret), you can pray for their future that God’s blessing and favor will always be with them.
I am so grateful that I have a mom who prays for me everyday and I want to become that blessing for my children.
I want people to look at their joy, kindness and strength of spirit and wonder how they got it and for my children to smile and say “I have a mom who prays for me”. (drop the mic)
What a wonderful and FREE gift we can give our children. What a joy that we have such power to influence their future in such a positive way.
Praying for our children does not have to be complicated. Say a prayer while you’re folding laundry that God may bless whoever is wearing this shirt and that they may be covered in his protection. My boys share clothes so I have to keep these prayers more general but feel free to specifically call out the name of the child you are praying for.
Pray while making lunch, while playing legos or babies on the floor. Just a simple “Father please help my daughter to be a kind person.”
“Lord, please help my son love what is good and always try to please you.”
And pray in confidence that what you ask will be granted to you. “Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.” Mark 11:24. Go ahead and re-read that. Let it sink in and wash over you.
Whatever your way of praying is, I encourage you to offer up your children and their future to your Heavenly Father. Pray for them and watch as our Father guides, leads and protected them. Time time when you have a free moment, sit quietly and pour out your worries to you Father. Place everything in His loving hands.
He loves you so much and is waiting to hear from you. He is ready to shower you and your children with His blessings.
POWERFUL PRAYERS YOU CAN SAY TODAY
If you’re looking for ideas on what to pray, these are some of my favorites. Depending on the situation I try to incorporate these into a conversation I might be having with a particular child.
Blessing when they leave for school for the day: – “The Lord bless you and keep you, the Lord make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you, the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace.” Numbers 6:24-26 (This is my favorite prayer. I say this as I kiss my kids before they leave for the bus)
Prayer against the spirit of fear and anxiety: – “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid, do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
Prayer for courage to start the day or when your child is looking for guidance: – “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 (I say this almost daily to myself)
Blessing when you are feeling fearful about your child’s future: – “The Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forever.” Psalm 121:8
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