While I love to read my Bible, worship through music, and listen to sermons on podcast, I find that, in this season of life with three young children, prayer is the easiest way for me to commune with God.
I pray while loading the dishwasher, in the shower, switching the laundry, pushing the stroller, driving in the car. You get the point. You can pray anywhere!
As I mentioned, over the last few months, God has really been teaching me about prayer. I am reading/praying through Stormie Ormartian's Power of a Praying Wife and Power of a Praying Parent. (which I highly recommend). I have been working on turning my affections toward the Lord throughout the day. I find myself listening to teachings on prayer. Prayer has been at the forefront of my mind.
One thing I have definitely noticed is that....Prayer changes circumstances and situations.
We all know that, but somehow I can forget that in the dailyness of life.
Just before naptime, when I planned to write this blog, God gave me a perfect example of prayer changing situations. For the last couple of months, Caleb has really struggled with reacting poorly when he does not get his way. In other words, he loses self control quickly when he's mad....he smarts off to me, stomps off, and slams doors. Just a few days ago, when I realized it has been an ongoing problem, I prayed for wisdom on how I could teach Caleb to respond better.
Yesterday, after one of his episodes, when he was apologizing and receiving forgiveness, I decided to pray for him--outloud--in the moment (thank you, God, for giving me that wisdom I asked for). With Caleb on my lap, I asked Jesus to show Caleb how he could better react when things do not go his way.
Today, it was naptime, but he wanted did not want to rest (he does not actually have to nap, but he does have to rest). While I was getting Chloe ready for naps, he slammed the door to my room (as per his usual behavior). Not 30 seconds later, he comes walking back into the room and says, "Mommy, I'm sorry for doing that."
I about died.
For months, this has been a struggle. After one prayer, he completely changed. I am sure this will continue to be something he has to grow in, but one thing is certain: God answered my prayer for wisdom and my prayer for Caleb to change.
God used this incident to reaffirm to me the importance of taking every matter to him.
At my MOMs group today, Julie (the amazing Happy Home Fairy....I highly recommend you checking out her blog!) mentioned, in passing, how God truly cares about every detail of our lives. And that is SO true.
God wants us to talk to him about everything. Nothing is too trivial. I pray about huge things, and I pray about small things. I will pray about getting a good parking spot at a busy store. And I will pray for God to intervene and end child se x trafficking. Clearly, the parking spot has no eternal value, but if it matters to me, it matters to God.
Think about it. Do you tell your kids, "Only speak to me when it is of eternal significance. I do not care to hear about your action figures (or baby dolls or books)." ABSOLUTELY NOT! And how much more awesome is God!!
Talk to God about any circumstance that you are having a hard time with: issues with children, conflict with your spouse, difficulty with a friend. He will answer. I cannot tell you the number of times that circumstances seemed hopeless, yet God always comes through.
It is equally important to talk to God and thank Him when things are going well. Give Him glory when He answers our prayers!
This topic seems obvious, but it is always a good reminder (to me, at least) that prayer is absolutely vital in raising children. Jesus loves our children and husband more than we do. He wants the best for them, more than we do.
God wants us to succeed, as parents. He wants us to love our children. He wants us to be gentle, patient, and kind to our kids. Yet, these can only be accomplished through prayer and depending on the Holy Spirit to help us.
Specifically to children, I want to share things that I pray for for my children. This is not an exhaustive list, by any means.
- I pray for their daily issues: potty training, bad attitudes, etc
- I pray over them before they go to bed: great sleep, good dreams, safety
- I pray for their future spouse
- I pray that each of them would walk with Jesus every day of their lives
- I pray for purity, that the only person they're ever intimate with is their spouse
- I pray for protection against the schemes of satan and anyone who would desire to hurt them
These are just a handful of things I pray for. If you want more ideas, Stormie Omartian's books are wonderful!
What are you praying for for your child today??