This week I want to encourage you to take a look at the prayer life of your home. Is your home saturated with the presence of God? Is the only time you pray together as a family at dinner time? If it is then expand it. Move past praying for the meal and begin praying for each other or for others who may be in need. If you’re anything like me and smell of food makes you lose your focus then extended prayer over food may not be an option for you. You may need to set a time before bed to pray as a family. Praying together as a family before bedtime can be a very meaningful way to end your day. Yes, those moments can be some of the most stressful because you may be anxious to get the kids off to bed so that you can have some quiet time with your spouse or maybe there are some things that you need to take care of. But remember that there are key moments in a day that you have an opportunity to disciple your children and right before bed is one of them.
If your kids are younger this will probably be easier to get started. When your kids start to get older if you have never had a family prayer time it could be very awkward at first. But you cannot be afraid to do it because it is awkward, this is the most important thing we can do for our children.
Also, begin sharing prayer requests with one another. Take an opportunity at breakfast or dinner to go around the circle and share some prayer requests with everyone. Maybe get a sheet of paper and write your prayer requests down and put them on the fridge.
If your children are younger, teach them to pray. Here are a few principles
- Keep It Simple
- Don’t enter into long speeches or use a lofty vocabulary
- Be repetitive
- If you have young children (1 – 3 years old) say the same prayer over and over again. After a while, they will begin to say it with you unprovoked.
- Be Consistent
- I understand that it can be hectic. It is incredibly important that you are consistent in your prayer time with your children. If you do not set a specific time to pray with God you will teach them that we pray when it is convenient.