November 17, 2010

Praying for Our Children

My Aunt Jill sent me this weekly prayer guide for parents.  I can always use help getting started praying for my kids; sometimes I'm not sure how to pray for them.  These are great categories through which you can speak specific requests to God for each of your children.  Such guides can also help us as parents think about how we can train our children in areas of service, loving God, loving truth, etc.

MONDAY: Ask the Lord to completely surround your children with emotional, physical and spiritual protection.
TUESDAY: Pray that the Lord will strengthen your children’s faith and will fill them with a passionate desire to want to seek and know Him, His word and His will.
WEDNESDAY: Ask the Lord to give your children godly wisdom in choosing their friends and peers, and to give them strength and courage to boldly take a stand for what is right.
THURSDAY: Pray that the Lord would renew your children’s mind. Helping them to remain pure in their thought and deeds.
FRIDAY: Ask the Lord to extend His blessing over the activities of your children, both academic and extracurricular, giving them alertness and clarity of mind. Pray also for encouragement in their defeats and humility in their victories.
SATURDAY: Pray that your children will be sensitive and compassionate to the needs of others, and that the Lord will help them act in love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.
SUNDAY: Pray for and seek blessings for those who are in authority over your children, asking the Lord to give them wisdom and understanding as they instruct your children.

Here, from The Message translation, are some verses for meditation, Romans 12:1-3 and 13:11-14 that my aunt included in her mailing to parents at her church.  (emphasis mine)

So here's what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don't become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You'll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.
I'm speaking to you out of deep gratitude for all that God has given me, and especially as I have responsibilities in relation to you. Living then, as every one of you does, in pure grace, it's important that you not misinterpret yourselves as people who are bringing this goodness to God. No, God brings it all to you. The only accurate way to understand ourselves is by what God is and by what he does for us, not by what we are and what we do for him.

But make sure that you don't get so absorbed and exhausted in taking care of all your day-by-day obligations that you lose track of the time and doze off, oblivious to God. The night is about over, dawn is about to break. Be up and awake to what God is doing! God is putting the finishing touches on the salvation work he began when we first believed. We can't afford to waste a minute, must not squander these precious daylight hours in frivolity and indulgence, in sleeping around and dissipation, in bickering and grabbing everything in sight. Get out of bed and get dressed! Don't loiter and linger, waiting until the very last minute. Dress yourselves in Christ, and be up and about!

God bless you as your pray for and train up your children! 

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