We love parents. Well, most of them. And by parents, I mean those raising children. You may not be biologically connected or may be a generation away or perhaps don’t live in the same home. But if you have a burden to raise a child, I’m speaking to you.
So I have some questions:
- How many of you let your kids go to school without breakfast?
- How many of you let your kids leave the house in just their underwear?
- Do you ever make them skip a meal?
We wouldn’t neglect these necessities. But do you neglect to pray for your kids?
My purpose is not to make you feel bad about yourself for not praying for your kids more. If it was, I would throw the first stone at myself. Rather, my goal is to encourage you.
You’re in this crazy profession called parenting, which is pretty thankless, costs you everything, and has no guarantees that your product will turn out good at all.
One day, I opened the kitchen cabinet to find green marker scribbled inside. I called to my four year-old daughter, who toddled in, short blond strands wisping. Her dimples pressed into her roomy cheeks.
I knelt beside her and pointed to the scribbles. If you blurred your eyes, the lines and doodles formed her name in a four-year-old kind of way. How cute, she was trying to write her name. No wait, I told myself. This behavior wasn’t appropriate. I had ti follow through.
“Do you know who did this?”
She squinted her pretty hazel eyes, furrowed her forehead in deep concentration, and then said, “Yes, the cat did it.”
I grimaced. “The cat did it?”
She stared back at me through marvelous marble eyes, “Yes, it was the cat.”
Clever girl. Normally, saying the cat did it wouldn’t have been impressive, but the cat actually has a pair of thumbs. Not human thumbs, cat thumbs. Thumbs would be useful in drawing on cabinets. My daughter knew this. The cat was born with a genetic mutation that gave her an extra toe on each front paw. These types of cats are called Hemingways, named for the writer Ernest Hemingway, who apparently loved this kind of cat and was such a good writer because he also had thumbs. Yes, clever girl.
I imagined little kitty grasping the green marker in her paws, her thumbs steadying the marker as she sketched my daughter’s name. I was about to laugh when suddenly I remembered that she was lying to me, my own flesh and blood lying directly to my face.
Nope, there’s no guarantee at all the product will turn out good. I thought, yes a parent needs to learn how to pray.
I don’t know what you may be going through as a parent, but I do know this–your child needs a praying parent.
Will you be a praying parent to pray intentionally and consistently for your child, with your child and for your child’s influences?
When I say “intentionally,” I mean you pray with purpose and meaning and individuality. I don’t mean just when you pray for dinner, because that may be the worst time when you’re tired and you’re like, “Dear God…put the fork down… God, we thank you for today…don’t put that in your mouth…you have blessed us…if I have to tell one more time…and Jesus we love you…to your room now! Ah, forget it.”
And when I say “consistently,” I mean you do it on a regular basis, maybe daily or weekly.
Here are the three things to pray for:
- For your child – pray when you are absent from your child
- With your child – pray when you’re with your child
- For your child’s influences – pray for the influences upon your child like school, church, friends, friend’s families, media, etc.
If you want to “make if official,” sign the praying parent pledge to receive resources via email to help you.