“Prayer is more than a wish; it is the voice of faith directed to God.” ~Billy Graham
Bedtime usually consist of the boys wrestling, arguing, asking for snacks and water or just trying to avoid bedtime. So imagine my surprise when I walked in on my two boys kneeling in prayer the other night. And praying together...with no yelling or fussing. Talk about a happy heart!
It's my heart's desire that they learn how to be prayer warriors early. Not only for themselves but everyone they encounter. I'm always reminding them that one day they'll be heads of households and leading prayer will be one of their greatest weapons.
I grew up in church but never really grasped the power of prayer until I was an adult. I surely don't want them to have to wait that long. So here's what I'm doing to help train them in the ways of prayer.
- Be The Example
Children learn what they live. So instead of just telling them to pray. I do my best to pray for them and with them so they can hear me pray and see me laying hands on them. Every morning, I pray over them for protection and that they'll do their best. How else will they know to do this if they never see it?
- Talk To God About Everything
Whenever the boys see a problem, have a need, concern or worry, I urge them to go to God in prayer about it. Prayer is not just for bedtime and mealtime. I want them to know that we need to go to God on behalf of others because intercession is a powerful tool. I think I'm going to pull out a map and have them start praying for other nations as well so they'll see that there are wants and needs outside of themselves.
- Educate and Train
It's not enough for them to just see me pray. Learning about prayer warriors in God's Word is crucial as well. And teaching them how to pray God's Word is of utmost importance and one that I'm going to focus on more this summer. I also want them to respect prayer in general. For example, when someone is praying, we don't talk while they're praying; we don't walk in church while prayer is happening and we kneel to pray when needed, we can raise our hands during prayer if we feel led.
I'm also working on teaching them different kinds of prayers and that prayer is a grocery list of wants. We have been going over the elements of prayers using the ACTS acronym:
- Adoration: Praising God for who is and what he has done!
- Confession: Telling God about the wrong things we have done and asking for his forgiveness.
- Thanksgiving: Thanking God for all he has done for us.
- Supplication: Asking for things for ourselves and others.
God is raising up young prayer warriors and I want these two little boys to be well-versed in how to fight on their knees.
What's been the best piece of advice you've been given regarding prayer?