Category Archives: prayer

Teaching Children About Prayer with FREE Prayer Journal Printable

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Last year, I was asked to lead a session at our church’s womens retreat about teaching children to pray. I was really challenged as I prepared to teach. This can be a daunting subject. It can easily be avoided… oh, they are too young. Oh, they won’t understand. Oh, they’ll learn when they are older.

But like anything, setting a good foundation early is important.

The biggest way, in my opinion, to teacher our children to pray is to lead by example.

Pray together as a family. Pray for your children and with your children. When something goes wrong, pray! When something goes right, pray! When something is confusing, pray! Pray with your children at meal times, bed time, school time. Just pray.

Prayer doesn’t have to be fancy. In fact, Jesus encourages us to NOT be like the pharisees who used a lot of fancy words and phrases. He encourages us, rather, to be sincere and from the heart. Our children don’t need us to be great orators. They just need us to be real. Prayer is simply talk to God. We talk to each other all the time. We can train our children that, because of the work that Jesus did on the cross, we can approach God with whatever is on our minds and hearts.

I do think there are a few key things to teach our children about prayer:

1. Prayer is talking to God (we’ve covered that)

2. God answers prayer… but it may not always be with a “yes.” Be sure to point out to your children when God has answered prayer. My son was four when we moved to Florida for my husband to go to seminary. Just before we left, he desperately wanted to go to the Georgia Aquarium. I told him that he would have to pray about it because we did not have the money for tickets. He did. He prayed and sure enough, we were blessed with a significant amount of money. The giver encouraged us to do something special as a family. We point back to that with my son often to remind him that God cares about what we care about…. that God heard his prayer.

3. God is not Santa Clause. God does not reward good behavior with treats and saying yes to prayers. God’s favor in our life is not based on our behavior. God’s favor in our life is based on His love for us. We should not only go to God with our desire for “stuff”. Prayer is also about confession, thanksgiving, praying for others.

4. Confession. Teach your children that it is okay and encouraged to go to God and tell him when we have messed up. We can ask him for forgiveness and know that he will forgive.

5. A heart of thankfulness. This one is hard for me and for my children. We live in such a society of bigger and better. There is always something bigger and better than what we have. I am always asking my children to be content and thankful for who they are and what they have.  Another way I have sought to cultivate a heart of thanksgiving in my children is this: when they wake up in the night with bad dreams, I tell them to think about things they are thankful for and thank God for those things. This helps to get their minds off the bad dreams and onto what God is doing in their lives.

For older children, it might be helpful for them to keep a prayer journal. They can keep a record of their prayer life and look back over it to see how God is indeed present in our lives.

I’ve included three different printable prayer journal pages. Click on the link BELOW the image to download the printable version:

prayer 1Click to download ->> Prayer Journal Purple Flowers

prayer 2Click to download ——->>Blue Letters Prayer Journal

prayer 3Click to download—->>Green Letters Prayer Journal

How do you teach prayer to your children? Comment below and share your ideas!

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Prayer Guide for Family and Self- Printables

Do you remember these posts about praying for your FAMILY and praying for YOURSELF? Well… I made some handy little printables to go along with them. Enjoy!

Husband Prayer (click here for Printable)

Prayer for Children (click here for printable)

Prayer for the Married Woman (click here for printable)

Prayer for the Single Woman (click here for printable)

I hope you find these resources helpful!

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Praying for My Boy

My son is six. He is the oldest. He is soon to have a third little sister. I pray for him. I have been praying for him for a while to be able to identify with his male- ness. In today’s world, I suppose I am out of line to want my boy to be boy-ish, aggressive, competitive, loud, wiggly, adventurous… a warrior. I am supposed to provide him with opportunities to explore both his masculinity and femininity… because…who I am I to tell him that he is supposed to be a boy… shouldn’t he have the right to figure that out on his own?

Hogwash

God made no mistakes when designing my little guy. He put him in the right body. He gave him the right mix of DNA. He didn’t make any mistakes.

So in the last few years, when my son would walk out of his sisters room wearing a princess dress and heels, I did not applaud his enlightened little heart and encourage him to complete the outfit with crown and wand. I also didn’t shame him. I didn’t fuss at him and say “boys don’t wear things like that.” When I would hear him and his sister playing fairies, I didn’t rush in the room and demand that he stop. When he was three and insisted that his favorite color was pink, we didn’t insist back that pink is a “girl” color.

What I have done is encourage him in his masculinity. I’ve asked him questions about why he’d rather pretend he is a princess, a sister, a fairy than be a boy when they play. I have asked him what is so special about pink that he really likes it. His answers are interesting. He didn’t want to play the daddy because the daddy has to leave and go to work (or school) and he wanted to be home… makes sense… it’s only girls at home with him all day. He likes pink because girls like pink and boys like girls… again… completely logical.

My husband is very attentive to our son and makes sure to spend time with him… wrestling, playing cards, throwing darts, playing make believe. He encourages him and prays for and with him.

Most importantly, I have prayed. Prayed that he would identify with his male-ness… that he would be okay with being a boy… that he would delight in who God made him to be.

I don’t think I realized what I was praying for. When we made our most recent move, the boy went from sharing a room with his sister to having his very own room. He has his own space now. I think that may have triggered something in him. Since we have moved, he has become more aggressive, more proud of the fact that he is a boy… more proud of his bodily functions and the sounds they make (much to my chagrin). He has begun to seek out boys at play groups and is fiercely protective 0f his new friend that is a boy. They have a boy’s club and he has even written rules… part of the rules say “if you like girlish stuff, you can’t be in the club. If you see a My Little Pony, say yuck and throw it across the room.” He is loud, he is wiggly, he needs to be released outside to run around. He is a boy for sure.

I am not, and never really was all that worried about my son’s identity, but watching him run around a friend’s house in fairy wings did spur me on to read books about raising boys and pray for my own little warrior. This world, our society in particular is becoming more and more feminized. Most teachers of young children are women, most Sunday school teachers are women… tv shows and sitcoms feature husbands and men in general as idiots… women are becoming the primary heroes in crime dramas on tv. Our boys are told to sit down and be still and control their bodies. They are squelched early on and that makes me sad.

Although I am not completely sure what I am praying for when I pray for my son and his boy-ishness… I will continue to do so… because this is who God made him to be and God makes no mistakes.

Here are a couple of great books geared for raising boys:

Bringing Up Boys

Wild Things

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A Prayer Guide for Self

Last week, I share a post that included a Prayer Guide for Family… more specifically for children and for your husband. I did not put the lists together, but have been blessed tremendously by them. I will not claim to have the knowledge that the woman who did assemble those lists, but here is my attempt at putting together a Prayer guide for your self. Again, it is 31 things… one for every day of the month. This list is geared towards women… wives and mothers… because I assume that is mostly who reads this blog. Feel free to adapt it to your stage in life. And please feel free to share this post with a link back to the original. Thanks!

1. To have a healthy fear of the Lord which is the beginning of knowledge and to graciously receive wisdom and instruction

2. have a gentle and quiet spirit

3. to not be wise in my own eyes, but seek the Lord for wisdom and direction. He has a will… ask Him what it is

4. that I would respect my husband and let him lead

5. that I would guard my heart in what I watch, listen to, read, etc.

6. that I would be a helpmate to my husband

7. that I would not be so concerned for my children’s happiness as their character and who they are in the Lord

8. that I would manage my household well

9. that I would be a good steward of my time and efforts concerning my home

10. that I would be a prudent wife

11. that I would model modesty for my children… both my daughters and my sons

12. that I would be hospitable… even when it may be an inconvenience

13. that I would be a gracious woman, wife, mother

14. that I would train up my children in the fear and wisdom of the Lord through intentional teaching as well as everyday moments

15. that I would be faithful to my husband in thought, word and deed

16. that I would be an encourager- thoughtful and tactful with my words

17. that I would be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry

18. that I would seek the Lord for my identity and not the opinion’s of others or the magazines I see in the store, etc.

19. that I would have a love for the Word of God

20. that I would not go to bed angry, but be willing to have tough conversations with my husband

21. that I would bring honor to my family and not shame

22. that  I would be protected from the schemes of the devil

23. that I would guard my tongue

24. that I would be willing to make the hard choices when I know that they are right

25. that I would discipline my children with love and respect

26. that I would be one who builds up my house and doesn’t tear it down

27. that I would have perseverance

28. that I would commit to the Lord whatever I do… even if it’s just changing diapers

29. that I would learn to be content in any circumstance

30. that I would not worry about tomorrow

31. that I would not be deceived by charm and beauty, but be a woman who fears the Lord

So… there you go… here’s my list. I hope you are able to use it.. Feel free to adapt it to where you are in life. I really can’t take credit for this list either… it’s all in the Bible.

Thanks for stopping by today. I’m linking this post up with the Hip Homeschool Hop.

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Updated:

My college roommate just sent me this Single Gal’s version of the above list.

1. To have a healthy fear of the Lord which is the beginning of knowledge and to graciously receive wisdom and instruction
2. have a gentle and quiet spirit
3. to not be wise in my own eyes, but seek the Lord for wisdom and direction.
4. that I would respect those I live and work with and seek to serve them
5. that I would guard my heart in what I watch, listen to, read, etc.
6. that I would seek to serve friends and families around me
7. that I would not be as concerned for my happiness as I am about my character
8. that I would manage my household well
9. that I would be a good steward of my time and efforts
10. that I would be a prudent (wise, discreet, careful) woman
11. that I would be a model of modesty
12. that I would be hospitable… even when it may be an inconvenience
13. that I would be a gracious woman, friend, coworker
14. that I seek to learn from the Lord, continually being trained up in righteousness
15. that God would provide a faithful man of the Lord to husband me if it is His will…and that I would rest in contentment
16. that I would be an encourager- thoughtful and tactful with my words
17. that I would be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry
18. that I would seek the Lord for my identity and not the opinion’s of others or the magazines I see in the store, etc.
19. that I would have a love for the Word of God
20. that I would keep short accounts and not harbor anger or bitterness toward those around me
21. that I would bring honor to my family and not shame
22. that I would be protected from the schemes of the devil
23. that I would guard my tongue
24. that I would be willing to make the hard choices when I know that they are right
25. that I would pursue discipline in my own life, rising early and honoring my body
26. that I would be one who builds up my house and doesn’t tear it down
27. that I would have perseverance
28. that I would commit to the Lord whatever I do… even if it’s just filing expense reports
29. that I would learn to be content in any circumstance
30. that I would not worry about tomorrow
31. that I would not be deceived by charm and beauty, but be a woman who fears the Lord

Thanks Roomie!

Printable versions of these prayer guides are now available… HERE!

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A Prayer Guide for Family

A few years back, I was blessed to be part of a thriving church that was not lacking in Bible studies for women. I picked up this prayer guide at one of the studies. I cannot claim it. A godly lady named Lisa put it together. I think it’s just wonderful though and wanted to share it with you.

First.. 31 Things to Pray for Your Children (31… one for everyday of the month)

1. they will be morally pure

2. they will obey and respect authority

3. they will see the need for a Savior at a young age

4. they will be protected from the schemes of Satan

5. they will love and know Your word

6. You will give them excellent health

7. they will have wisdom of Solomon and also apply it

8. they will have and be a special friend

9. they will not be bossy as an older child or passive as a younger child

10. their “yes” will be “yes” and their “no” will be “no”

11. they will one day be equally yoked with a Godly man or woman

12. they will be humble, desiring for You to have the glory

13. their life would be used to promote God’s kingdom

14. they will understand grace and not love by the law

15. that my girls will have a gentle and quiet spirit and that my boys will one day be the spiritual leader of his family

16. they will hunger and thirst for Your righteousness

17. they will identify with their femaleness and their maleness

18. they will hate evil and avoid it and get caught when they disobey

19. they will have a strong work ethic

20. they will be critical thinkers

21. they will be an encourager of others

22. they will fulfill the meaning of their name

23. they will be salt and light

24. they will have Your self image

25. that my child will know he or she is deeply loved

26. that my child will know they cannot have their own way

27. they will love you Lord

28. they will love others as You love

29. they will be honest with You, themselves and others

30. they will be a faithful steward of all the treasures and talents you entrust to them

31. they will live with eternal perspective

And… because I assume that most of the people who read this blog are women… here is a guide to pray for your husbands. From the same lady who put together the above list.. and again… 31 things…

1. above reproach

2. husband of one wife

3. temperate

4. prudent

5. respectable- worthy of respect

6. hospitable

7. able to teach

8. not pugnacious

9. gentle

10. uncontentious

11. free from the love of money

12. manage his own household well

13. good reputation- as he coaches outside of the church, etc.

14. man of dignity

15. holding to the mystery of faith

16. not double tongued

17. godliness with contentment would find great gain

18. righteous without sin

19. love the Lord with all his heart, mind and strength

20. faithful servant

21. love, stir in him superior passions for You

22. perseverance

23. to work as an evangelist

24. make a covenant with his eyes

25. man of passion

26. protected from the schemes of Satan

27. believe what is true

28. mentor

29. watch over heart

30. honor the Lord from the first fruit

31. love the Word and meditate on it

I am going to work on a 31 things to pray for ourselves list to be posted soon. Let me know if this guide is helpful to you. It’s a great resource… I just need to put it into practice!

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Updated 10/ 13/ 2011

Please also check out the  Prayer Guide for Self (women- single, married, moms)

Printable Versions of these prayer guides are now available… HERE.

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