3 Reasons to Pray for Our Kids
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A guest post by Tara L. Cole
As we get into the swing of another school year, you may be helping your kids prepare for college visits, begin a new job, or settle in at college. During this season as it comes time to let go and move from “the boss” to “advisor,” where do we start? How do we guide our kids during these new phases of life?
It starts in prayer.
If you’ve been in church for a while, you’ve probably heard a lot of sermons on prayer. Let’s focus on three specific reasons why you should prioritize prayer even more during this season of letting go.
Why We Should Pray for Our Kids Reason #1: Because You’re Invited
The Creator of the Universe, Lord of Heaven’s Armies, invites us to pray to him. Invites us into an intimate relationship with Him. Why would we say, “no?”
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 tells us:
Always rejoice, constantly pray, in everything give thanks. For this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7 also states:
Do not be anxious about anything. Instead, in every situation, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, tell your requests to God. And the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
Then in the verses proceeding the well know Jeremiah 29:11 passage God says
For I know what I have planned for you,’ says the Lord. ‘I have plans to prosper you, not to harm you. I have plans to give you a future filled with hope. When you call out to me and come to me in prayer, I will hear your prayers. When you seek me in prayer and worship, you will find me available to you. If you seek me with all your heart and soul I will make myself available to you, says the Lord (Jeremiah 29:11-14a, NET).
We love this promise, you’ve probably even quoted it to your kids during times of stress, but we forget that it is proceeded by prayer. As we move into a new season with our kids, we need to remember that those blessings and plans for them are based on a life of prayer and seeking God first.
Why We Should Pray For Our Kids Reason #2: Because You’re Given Examples
We also see this example from our favorite Bible heroes. When they came up against struggles or new seasons in their lives, they began in prayer.
Before Jesus chose his twelve apostles from his group of disciples he spent the night in prayer (Luke 6:12-16). Then at the Mount of Olives before his crucifixion, Jesus went to God in prayer (Luke 22:39-45). If the son of God prayed, during shifts in his life, who are we to do any less?
While your family is in this time of transition, instead of making never-ending lists and stressing you and your kids out. Begin in prayer. Ask God for his guidance during this time to focus on what matters most.
Why We Should Pray for Our Kids Reason #3: Because You Receive Benefits
Another reason we should pray is that there are so many benefits to prayer! Who in their right mind would say, “No thanks!” When offered peace beyond understanding, a direct line to God, and great and effective power? That is precisely what God promises to us in Philippians 4:7, Proverbs, 15:29, and James 5:16.
He holds out these blessings with an open hand. All he asks is that we trust him, reach out, and take them. Yet so often we walk away. We don’t trust. We don’t take them.
We try to navigate this new season of parenting on our own, thinking listening to one more podcast, scrolling through social media, or talking with a friend will give us the wisdom and support we need. Those things might help, but our primary response during these times of uncertainty always needs to be to look to God and His blessings first.
Seeing our kids launch into the world can be exciting and scary. We hope that the foundation we helped them lay over the last eighteen years has been enough, and they will make wise choices as they leave our homes.
We might not be there to help them daily, but we have access to the One who is there with them. We can continue to bring them before God in prayer knowing he loves them even more than we do.
If you need help praying for your kids as they navigate their final years of high school or begin their first years of college, pick up a copy of Everyday Prayers for the School Year wherever books are sold. As a college professor for 15 years, I purposefully wrote this prayer devotional for Moms who have kids of all ages and stages of school. It was written with you and your children in mind. My prayer is that it will help your family draw closer to Jesus this school year.