I recently read something from Leslie Ludy that really impacted me. She said that during busy times of motherhood we shouldn’t let our prayer life hit the back burner. She said it’s the times we barely have time to pray that we actually need prayer the most.
In fact, it’s during these times we can’t afford to not pray!
Lately I’ve been thinking about what my kids will face as they grow up and I’m determined, among the “urgency” of daily life, to pray for specific things in their future.
Not just who they’ll marry or what they’ll be when they grow up (although these are great prayers) but for other less obvious things.
Here are the things I think all moms should pray for their children.
1. Timely wisdom
The first consistent prayer I prayed with my firstborn – that God routinely answered – was for timely wisdom.
I asked that God would lead me to the right person, bit of advice, tip or hunch that would help me manage life with a child. Without fail I’d hear someone offer how they did things, read a certain passage in a book, or have a light bulb moment and BHAM… opportunity to put it into practice.
I now pray God will give me timely wisdom so that I can do my best to do what’s best for each child as they grow and change.
It doesn’t mean there aren’t hurdles (trouble will come… John 16:33), but that I can see God actively moving in our day to day life.
2. God would keep them on a short leash
The pastor at my former church said he routinely prayed God would keep their son on a short leash. That his sins wouldn’t remain hidden and undiscovered. “Ha ha ha, poor kid,” I thought at the time, but now I see what they were getting at. Sin thrives in darkness! Trouble that’s hidden can multiply without intervention.
Now… I don’t mean that I need to keep my children on a short leash. I just pray that God would never let them stray too far without shining a light.
We must teach our children and guide them in wisdom and discernment, but I think this prayer is just another level of protection. You teach your children not to walk into traffic, but you still hold their hands at busy intersections, don’t you?
3. Avoid the wrong crowd
If only parents could choose every person who has influence over our children… Alas, we absolutely cannot. We can teach them to find friends of high character who are kind and fun, but we’re not with our children 24/7.
The Bible is clear, “Do not be misled, bad company corrupts good character.” (1 Cor. 15:33). And we don’t want to raise foolish children or those who keep company of fools either.
I pray that my children will find friends who are encouraging, uplifting, and challenging. Not people who are just like them or cool or whatever else society says, but kids of good character.
And I pray God will protect them from being attracted to the wrong crowds and getting sucked into groups and situations that cause their downfall.
4. Short accounts
My discipleship course leader used this phrase often…
“Keep short accounts.”
It meant to not let uneasy situations, unresolved conflicts, decisions, or problems linger until they become mountains. Don’t let misunderstandings become feuds.
One grievance needn’t mean the end of a friendship. I pray that my children will learn to make the decisions weighing heavy on their shoulders. To forgive quickly when appropriate, and to be willing to confront in love in a timely manner.
It’s easier to move on from a situation when it hasn’t taken up permanent residence in your brain for decades.
I don’t want my children going into adulthood with unnecessary baggage. There will be hard times that will scar the most resilient of people, so being able to let go of these weights will help them be more free as adults.
5. God would be real to them
We don’t have to “prove God exists” on our own to our children. Luckily, God is perfectly able and willing to prove He exists if we give Him opportunity in our home.
Psalm 3:8 says “Salvation belongs to the Lord.” Whew. That’s a load off. Because it’s enough to feed them, clothe them, and daily dispose of their bodily fluids without also being single-handedly responsible for their salvation.
It is most definitely my job to create an environment in our home where God is welcome and where His principles are taught and followed. Where love is shown, grace is given, and where people are loved and welcome no matter what they believe or do.
But I also pray that God would answer their prayers. That He’d speak to them through the Bible and dreams. That they would know deep deep down in their own hearts that He is real. And that He is for them.
We must do our job as parents and then we must leave the rest to God.