Patience. Isn’t that the common theme of prayers prayed by moms and dads?

“Lord give me patience as I raise my children.” 
Or the more frustrated Adamish version: “Lord provide patience as I raise these kids You gave me” (see Genesis 3:12).
Maybe there is another way to go when praying for and about our families.
If we really want to know what to pray for and how to pray effectively for those things, a connection between our prayers and our reading of the Bible is critical. 
Prayer inspiration is directly related to reading God’s inspired word. 

Mediating on scripture is the best pre-prayer exercise. Pondering and thinking about God’s word stretches our understanding of who God is and strengthens our resolve to pray boldly and specifically.

So…let’s start with what we shouldn’t pray for:

1. Praying for anything outside of God’s will and word, will get you a no for sure and it may not even get you an audience with the King of Kings.

2. Praying with wrong motives, the selfish all about me types of prayers. 
Demanding things from God as if  He is a spiritual vending machine.

3. Praying for personal pleasure or happiness that is derived from something other than God (positions, possessions, power, prestige, pleasure) with the goal of glorifying ones self rather than the Lord.  

And even when you do ask you don’t get it
because your whole aim is wrong- you want only what will give you pleasure.
James 4:3 TLB  
When we pray, God cares about our motives. Are we moved to pray due to our love for the Lord and our love for others?

Here are five ideas on what to pray for when praying for your child: 

1. The 5 Ps: 
A passion for the Lord. God’s purpose to be fulfilled in your child’s life. For peers and a future partner who know the Lord and will draw your child closer to Him rather than further from him. Purity in thought and action (Or renewed purity. It is never too late!) 

2. A Replacement Prayer: 
We always know what we don’t want but can’t always identify what we do want. Pray the Lord replaces the thing you would like extinguished with God-honoring behavior or thought: Father, please replace my child’s feeling of unworthiness with a knowledge of how much You love and value Him. 

3. The Busted Prayer (Kids hate this one.) 
Lord, I pray You give me eyes to see and ears to hear what is going on in my child’s life. When he steps off the path You have for him, I pray this behavior and my child’s heart condition come to light. 

4. The Crop Failure Prayer

“God, my child has wandered off from our family and from You. I pray any ungodly activity he is involved in leaves him empty and unsatisfied. I ask that you give him a desire to fill that emptiness with You. I pray the things he has sown he will not reap.” 

5. The I Blew It Prayer (Parents love this one!)
“Lord, I confess I have made a mess of this situation. Please forgive me. I ask that you turn my mistakes into a blessing because you are not hindered by my failures as a parent. You can work all things to the good for those who love you.”  

Pray earnestly. Pray expectantly. Pray big. 
When praying for your kids, what do you pray for?

Faith, hope, and love,

© LoriWildenberg. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Lori Wildenberg is a licensed parent and family educator, parent coach, and co-founder of 1Corinthians13 She has written 6 books including Messy Journey: How Grace and Truth Offer the Prodigal a Way Home; The Messy Life of Parenting: Powerful and Practical Ways to Strengthen Family Connections; and her most recent book, Messy Hope: Help Your Child Overcome Anxiety, Depression, or Suicidal Ideation. Contact Lori for your next event or for parent consulting or parent training courses. Lori can also be found mentoring over at the MOMS Together Group on Facebook.

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