Prayer is a non-negotiable part of the Christian life. It is as important as breathing. How then do we help our children understand the value of prayer?
Here are a few thoughts to consider:
Teach your children about the life of Christ
In the New Testament, we find several examples of Jesus praying during various times and circumstances in his life. He got alone to spend time in uninterrupted prayer (Mark 1:35; Luke 5:16; 6:12). He prayed for others to share the gospel (Matthew 9:38). He prayed for Simon Peter’s faith not to fail (Luke 22:32). He prayed for his disciples and for us (John 17:15,20). He prayed during difficult times (Luke 22:39-44). He even prayed on the cross (Luke 23:34). In the life of Christ, we see one communed with the Father through prayer daily. Teach your kids about this reality. Help them see that prayer isn’t just a boxed to be checked for Christians. Prayer was near and dear to the heart of Jesus and should be for his followers.
Live a life of prayer and communion with God
Not only do we need to tell our children about Jesus’ prayerful life. We also need to live out that same love for communing with the Father through prayer (Romans 12:12; 1 Timothy 2:1-2). Through Jesus Christ, we have a direct assess to communion with God the Father (Hebrew 4:14-16). Let that reality motivate and stir your affections for time alone with God in prayer. How amazing that we can speak directly to the Father!!
Your example of a prayerful lifestyle will have a lasting impact on your children. They will see and experience first-hand your dependence on God and love of God through prayer (Philippians 4:6; Colossians 4:2).
Model and teach them the importance of prayer during Family Devotion times
Along with teaching them about Christ and modeling a life of prayer personally, it is also vital that as a family we have times of gathering together to pray. We need to teach and show our kids how to pray. During times of prayer as a family, you will be able to provide personal instruction and guidance to them that will give them confidence for prayer in their own life. Over the course of their life with you, they will learn the value of prayer through the continual and regular times they experienced prayer in the home. This influence will go with them into their adult lives.
Some Examples of how to teach and model for your kids the importance of prayer
- Pray through the Lord’s prayer. The Lord’s Prayer is a vital passage to go over with your children as you help them learn how to pray (Matthew 6:9-13). Praying through the various petitions of the Lord’s prayer will teach your children how we are to pray.
- Let a passage of Scripture guide your prayer time as a family. Praying God’s Word keeps us focused on what the Father values.
- Pray for your children in their presence. This demonstrates your love for them and the value of prayer for their life.
- Keep a prayer journal as a family to remind your kids of how God has answered prayer.
- Use the ACTS Pattern of Prayer as a family to guide your prayer time.
- Pray for a different topic each night of the week (or a few days during the week). Consider categories such as family, friends, church leaders, the lost, the government, neighbors, missionaries, etc. This demonstrates to your kids how we are to pray for a variety of people and circumstances.
As the Legacy Children’s Ministry we value partnering with you in spreading God’s fame in your home. If you have any questions about helping your kid’s value prayer please don’t hesitate to reach out to Pastor Eric.