matterofprayer blog post for Thursday, January 30, 2014
Praying for Children
I hesitate to put this down on the screen (years before, I would have said “put down on paper”), but I do not pray for my children every day. I know, I know. I am not a stellar example of an intercessor, a person of prayer. I especially do not consider myself a prayer warrior. However, I do have a desire to bring people together in prayer. I facilitate an intercessory prayer chain at my church, and I enjoy doing that! It gives me great satisfaction to keep track of various prayer requests, note the answers to prayer, and see the gratitude that comes from people we are praying for. (or from their family members and friends, too)
However, I was nudged today to pray for my children. My children are getting older. Only one is still in high school—the other three are all in college or beyond. Still, I pray for my children’s well-being, for their personal relationships, for their work, and especially for their spiritual growth and relationships with God. Some days ago, I mentioned a wonderful book by Stormie Omartian called The Power of a Praying Parent. I still use this book, often, when I pray for my children. I did so this morning, in my (fairly regular) prayer time, and the prayer time was okay. Not exceptional, but I did feel a connection with God.
Later this afternoon, I read a blog post about a child in Africa. This child was sponsored by a couple here in the United States. The blog post was well-written, a vivid word-picture of the situation the child and her family lived in. But this blog post brought something else to my mind: something Stormie mentioned in her book.
In the first chapter of Stormie’s book, she says, “We can be a friend, a teacher, a grandparent, an aunt, a cousin, a neighbor, a guardian, or even a stranger with a heart of compassion of concern for a child. . . . If you’re aware of a child who doesn’t have a praying parent, you can step into the gap right now and answer that need.”
I’ve tried to be that answer. I do pray for children and teens. It doesn’t matter whether they are your (or my) children, or not. You might be the only person praying for that child. I’ve tried to school myself in that way. If God brings some child or teen to my mind, I really try to stop and pray for them. It doesn’t matter whether I am related to them, or not. Often, I feel compassion and tenderness in my heart. So, I pray. Sometimes.
Let’s pray. Dear God, I feel compassion and care for children—sometimes. Thank You for this care that You’ve placed in my heart—in all of our hearts. Please, help me—help us to think of a child or teen to pray for, sometimes. It might mean the world for them. Thanks for all of those I don’t even know who prayed for me. You know them, God. May I be there for some other child or teen, when they need prayer. In Your mercy, God, hear our prayer.