When we pray for our children we are aligning our hearts with God’s heart. God loves all people but he has a special love for children. Jesus demonstrated this when he scolded his own disciples for trying to prevent the children from approaching and “bothering” him. He also taught that there would be serious punishment done to any who would cause harm to children.
God always hears us when we pray. He intervenes and acts on our behalf and for our greatest good, even if that is not how we interpret any given situation. When we pray for our children God does an amazing thing in our own hearts. He softens us and adjusts our attitudes towards the one for which we are praying. He will help us know how to meet the individual needs of each of our children.
When my # 3 son was about three or four years old and his little sister was one or two he was struggling with not being the baby. He would have serious meltdowns multiple times a day. I could not change the situation and was at a loss as to how to deal with him. I prayed and asked God why He gave me such a sensitive child when I was not a sensitive person? My very next thought, which I believe was God, speaking to me was, “that is why you need a sensitive child.” I replied, “How do I manage him?” The answer was, “hold him.” Every day thereafter I made certain that I took an hour to hold him in my lap. We would talk and read books. It worked. He enjoyed sitting in my lap. It made a huge emotional difference for him.
“And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.” Luke 2:52. I think this verse about Jesus as a child gives us some great ideas and guidance for how to pray for our children.
As a child Jesus grew. Children are growing so pray for their growth. Pray that they will be healthy and strong. Pray they will not suffer sickness and affliction. Pray for physical protection from accidents and from people who would do them harm. Pray they would be emotionally well. Pray for them intellectually, that they would learn and do well in their schooling. Pray they would be able to understand and apply new concepts, that they would become logical and reasonable.
Their spiritual needs (in favor with God) should be prayed for. We want them to understand how much God loves them and learn to love Him. Help them love God’s Word and apply it to their lives. Pray they would learn to discern between evil and good and between good and best and that they will desire to choose the good and the best in life. Pray they will be truthful and their faith would increase.
Relational needs are huge. Pray they will get along with parents, siblings, and peers and learn to be respectful. Pray they will choose their friends wisely and wisely choose their activities with their friends.
Pray for yourself to be a wise parent, to see beyond the obvious to truth. You won’t be a perfect parent. No one is a perfect parent. As your children grow and mature, your prayers for their needs will change, but you and they will always benefit from those prayers.