Skip to main content

3 Things to Pray for Your Kids TODAY - Day 9

Today I'm going to let you in on a secret - actually three secrets.  I want to pass on to you three little prayers I've learned that will fill in the cracks, cover up your parenting screw-ups, and manage your children's mistakes.  Whether your first baby is kicking your ribs from the inside right now or is old enough to drive a car and get married, NOW is the time to begin bringing these petitions before God.

To the untrained ear these words might sound like magical incantations.....a desperate, against-all-odds hope that you can change destiny.  That evaluation couldn't be any farther from the truth.  These are prayers of a confident heart that knows God is the only one with the power to change hearts.  He is deeply concerned about how our kids turn out because they're His kids after all, aren't they?  So we pray and believe and parent.

1.  "Please protect my children from my parenting."

The first, most important prayer I learned from my Momma as I heard her pray it over me.  My Mom approached parenting from ground zero, knowing she needed training and supernatural power to achieve her goals.  The way she had been parented felt like more of a liability to her than a starting point so she was desperate to change the course of our family tree.  She did more study about parenting than anyone I've ever seen. After she studied, she prayed this prayer.  Often.  And Out Loud.  She wanted God to fill in the gaps and give me the things I needed that she couldn't provide.  She cried out to Him to protect me from the things that she was getting wrong despite her best efforts.

Hearing this prayer from my Momma's lips did some profound things for me. The most important were the future parenting help it provided.  I grew up with deep-seated confidence that when I wasn't sufficient, God most certainly would be.  One of the best gifts I've ever been given is a humble Mom who I watched, and heard, depend on God's power in her life.

2.  "God, let my children get caught when they do things wrong." 

This lesson came from a mentor of mine, Sue.  I remember her words having a brain-bending quality when I first heard them.  It's so easy as a Mom to get confused and think my job is to protect my kids from pain when sometimes pain is exactly what they need.  If my goal is to raise independent adults who self-regulate and bless to society, then I can't short-circuit earned consequences. These are powerful teachers.  A goal-oriented Mom knows that the younger a child is when they make mistakes, the cheaper the lesson attached to that mistake will be.  A mom who really believes this might secretly fist-pump as her preschooler steals something from the grocery store, here's why.

A preschooler who steals a candy bar while his mom is shopping will need to apologize to the store manager and then do extra chores at home to pay Mom back for the candy.  This lesson is powerful and comes with a cheap price tag, much cheaper if a high schooler steals a TV from Best Buy.  He is likely to spend a couple nights in Juvie and graduate from high school with a criminal record.  A 2nd grader who cheats on a test gets a zero for a grade and has a serious conversation with an important school person.  That's a cheap lesson compared to an adult who learns the cost of cheating by losing their job. It's also cheaper than a college student who learns the cost of cheating by losing a scholarship and needing to transfer back home a community college to finish.  

Another really awesome thing about your kid getting caught and having outside consequences teach a lesson is that you don't have to be the bad guy for this one.  When my child faces a hard lesson at school, I get to be the one who comes alongside them to help.  I can commiserate, tell them about times when I faced something similar, and be heard by their heart in a different way than if I was the one bringing the pain.

3.  "Ask God to send other truth-speaking adults into your children's lives."

No matter what age your kids are, littlies to boys who shave, you need to not be the lone voice of truth in their lives.  Hearing the same things you say will suddenly hit the mark when it's spoken by a college kid who dresses cooler than you, a youth leader who took them on a mission trip, or a teacher who won't let them settle for less than their best.  My mentor, Sue encouraged me to tell God often how much I wanted these people in my kids' lives, and then keep my eyes peeled because He would send them!

Start early asking God to bring people to your kids who are willing to invest in them.  After you pray, get busy!  Send your kids to youth group.  Make them be the regular kids who the youth leaders know the best.  If a teacher who you really respect is taking kids on a trip, make sure your kid goes.  Don't be shy about asking people to take a special interest in your child.  Offer the college kid in your church whose heart is on fire for God $20 to take your kid out for Frosty's.  Hire those godly college students to tutor your kids or teach them skills your kids are interested in.  Do whatever it takes to put a megaphone into the hands of people with truth-telling voices in your kid's lives.

And, as a side note, look for opportunities to be that person in other kids' lives too.  Your friends' kids, kids running through the halls of your church, the kids who live next door - they could all use another voice speaking truth.  Their parents will be grateful.

 Whoever said, "What goes around comes around." might have overheard the conversation I had with Sue last night.  This week she and her husband took my son and his girlfriend out to dinner, and just hung out with them.  I thanked her for being willing to make such an investment in their relationship and told her how much it meant to me.  She smiled a knowing smile and reminded me of the time I've spent with her daughters in our youth group.  Funny that I hadn't connected those dots myself yet, I guess Sue is still teaching me!  I thanked her for being someone she had taught me to ask God for! And then she thanked me for the same thing!  It's cool to be that for each other, so link arms with a friend and pinky promise to care about each other's kids.

These three prayers are simple, yet profound.  They will change you and change your children. That's what we're after, right??  So hit your knees, Momma, let's get some work done!


  1. Good reading. Helpful reading. Thank you, friend.

    1. It's nice to see your thoughts here. Thanks for the encouragement and tight hugs!


Post a Comment

I'd love to hear what you think!

Popular posts from this blog

What You Need, When You Need It - The Glorious Table

We ate steak at the fanciest place in town, me and my sister, our husbands, and our parents. Around the table, we joined Mom’s reminiscing. We retold our favorite stories of family vacations and holidays. We revealed some silly childhood secrets. And we listened to Mom’s stories from fifty years she and Dad spent together. One of our favorite stories is of the birthday Mom expected a diamond ring but went home from their swanky dinner with a shiny new set of hot rollers. Whenever Mom tells that story, instead of making fun of Dad for his slow-moving ways, she praises his serious, methodical decision making. She points to it as proof of his dependability. My mom told stories. I told stories. My sister told stories. Even our husbands had memories to share. We retold some of the stories Dad put on paper in his journal for us. The thing we missed most was Dad’s voice in the storytelling. Rather than telling the stories himself, he locked eyes on the teller and responded, “By golly, that ha

How to Be OK When You’re in a Funk - The Glorious Table

My favorite jeans are starting to cut into my waist in an uncomfortable way. The grocery order keeps getting delayed when we’re already out of milk. The dog has gotten into the trash again. My kids carry individual sadnesses I can’t fix for them. It’s rainy and cold. My hip aches at night sometimes. People I thought were dependable turn out not to be. I’ve turned out to be not as dependable as I thought I was. My dad is sick. I suddenly need reading glasses for the fine print. It’s impossible to predict which of these disappointments will have the power to push me into a full-on funk. I have days that feel so full of hope and possibility that I have the juice to face the big stuff with faith and trust. Other days start out already negative, so even good things feel bad. Funks and feelings don’t submit to the scientific method. They often multiply uncertainties and disappointments until the weight of dark clouds feels too heavy for my one set of shoulders to bear. I have a feeling that

Fear - You're Not the Boss of Me Anymore! - Part 1

I had a recurring nightmare as a child. It woke me in the middle of the night and kept me awake worrying about whether it would fill my mind as soon as I closed my eyes. I thought I would outgrow it. I hoped my adult brain would be able to see things my child’s brain couldn’t and I would be free. Instead, a panicky fear of my Dad dying followed me into marriage and parenting. I’m 49 years old and until recently, the nightmare still showed up in various forms. This year my beloved Daddy died. I watched him take his last breath in front of me and imagined him arriving with the next in heaven. My whole life I’ve been clenched up around the fear that watching him die might break something inside of me and I couldn’t survive.  It didn’t happen. I’m more okay than I ever thought possible. My dad isn’t living anymore, he’s not here on earth for me to talk to or touch and I’m sitting upright and in my right mind. Today I’m amazed at my okayness. Finally being free of this fear I’ve lived with