Becoming A Praying Family Series: Part 3 Your Children
Prayer is really just a relationship with our Heavenly Father. Prayer might look different to different people. Some may have certain words or prayers that they feel have to be said to make that connection with God. Some pray scripture as a guide to their prayers. Still others search for the leading of the Holy Spirit to guide them, whether through a prayer prompting or speaking in utterances as was on the Day of Pentacost. I personally use all of the above, but one thing’s for sure: I am strengthening my relationship and faith in my creator. Children need to know that they can talk to God. He is always there to hear their prayers and He wants to speak to them through the Holy Spirit that lives within us.
There are many ways to teach your children to pray. Of course, the number one way to teach your children to pray is to lead by example, but there are some things that might make it easier to understand what prayer is, how it works, and why we do it. When my children were younger, I had a simple way to help lead them in their prayers. It uses their hand to help your child remember how to pray.
The Five Fingers of Prayer
1. Your thumb is nearest to you. So begin your prayers by praying for those closest to you. They are the easiest to remember. To pray for our loved ones is, as C.S. Lewis once said, a “sweet duty”.
2. The next finger is the pointing finger. Pray for those who teach, instruct, and heal. This includes teachers, doctors, and ministers. They need support and wisdom in pointing others in the right direction. Keep them in your prayers.
3. The next finger is the tallest finger. It reminds us of our leaders. Pray for the president, leaders in business and industry, and administrators. These people shape our nation and guide public opinion. They need God’s guidance.
4. The fourth finger is our ring finger. Surprising to many is the fact that this is our weakest finger; as any piano teacher will testify. It should remind us to pray for those who are weak, in trouble, or in pain. They need your prayers day and night. You cannot pray too much for them.
5. And last comes the little finger; the smallest finger of all, which is where we should place ourselves in relation to God and others. As the Bible says, “The Least shall be the greatest among you.” Your pinkie should remind you to pray for yourself. By the time you have prayed for the other four groups, your own needs will be put into proper perspective and you will be able to pray for yourself more effectively.
By using simplistic words and being transparent in your prayers, your children will learn that God hears our prayers when we spend time talking to Him. Many authors have written great books on guiding your children to a prayer life. Here are just a few that I have found:
Because praying FOR our children is just as important as teaching our children to pray, I made a commitment at the beginning of the year to fast and pray every Wednesday for the children of this generation. I have seen God do some mighty things in my church, in my community, in my children, and, most importantly, in my own life. Consider joining me each week on facebook at Cornerstone Kids Church at Cornerstone Family Worship, Tonganoxie,KS. How can I pray for your family today?