Life is stressful. Life with children is normally even more stressful. As parents we know that we should have spiritual conversations with our children, but often we find it hard to create those moments in the course of a normal day. Here are a few ideas for adding prayer to your time with your small children.
In Car Prayers
Families spend lots of time in the car so why not redeem some of that time as a time to pray prayers of praise.
Before You Start:
Before you crank the car inform your children that part of your trip will be a prayer of praise by saying the following silly rhyme.
We’re in the car for another ride
and we need something to pass the time.
So from now till then until we get there
we will pray the “see what God has made” prayer.
How it works:
- Take turns saying things that you see that God has made. Once you say something you see the next person has to say a short prayer of thanks for that item and then gives the next item. This continues around the car (or back and forth between 2 people).
- For older kids add an element of memory to the game by listing everything that is said each time. For instance if Sally says, I see Trees then Mom would say Thank you God for the trees. I see a dog. Sally would then have to say, “thank you God for trees and that dog.” and then would add something that she saw and it would continue from there.
- If small children have a trouble differentiating between things that are man made and God made be sure to point out that everything is made by someone made by God so everything that you see can be used as a way to praise God.
Being out in public with your children can sometimes be stressful. Beat the stress and add prayer to your day by taking short (1 minute) prayer breaks while you are out and about.
How it works
Once every hour stop everything you are doing and sit down to pray. Find you a bench or a place you can sit sort of out of the way. Sit down. Pull your children up into your lap or put your arms around them. Take a few deep breaths and then pray.
Pray for the people that you see around you. Pray that God will use you to be a light to them. Encourage your children to pray for the people that they see as well. When you are finished squeeze them all real tight and go on about your business. You will feel better and your children will see a visual demonstration of the importance of prayer.
Pick Up Prayers
This isn’t really an idea to pray with your children, but it is something that I have found helpful. The idea is to pray for your children as you are cleaning up after them.
How it works:
As you are picking up your child’s toys or other things use that time to pray for him. Let that small act of service that you are doing be an offering to God and lift up your child to Him in prayer as you are cleaning.
(on a personal note: One of my son’s favorite toys is Legos, but since he is just 5 he doesn’t do a very good job of organizing them. Some of my biggest prayer times for that little boy come when I am getting those little pieces back into the right container.)