Our children growing up today are exposed to a whole host of influences and pressures that seem to be getting more and more out of our control.  The statistics are shocking.  Every child that loses hope in life is one too many.  It's serious!   

As a believer concerned for children, I can often feel like the father in Mark 9 - whose child for 12 years has exhibited behavior beyond his capacity to parent.  I can often feel like the apostles too - what the church offers is far too often not enough to make a difference... What is Jesus' response?  Have faith.  This is only possible with prayer.  We need to pray for our children! 

How can we pray for our children? 

Remember, it's not what goes into our children that makes them unwell but what comes out of their hearts (Mark 7:15).  Shielding them from dangers isn’t going to be enough to save them.  Our children's greatest need is to come to a mature faith and intimate relationship with God.  Our children are capable of this faith.  In fact, God's promise is that when the world is at it's worst He will still be directly and personally extending His grace to children (Isaiah 54:13).  Even if our family or social inheritance is riddled with failures, God still has a plan and a purpose for the future of every child. In fact, Jesus thanks the Father that it's His purpose to reveal Himself to children (Matthew 11:25-26).  It's an expression of His gracious will. It's an expression of His nature.  It's what He wants to do! 

Our invitation as parents, grandparents, teachers, social workers - anyone concerned for children - and intercessors is to agree with God's plan to encounter our children's hearts.  Only His spirit poured into their hearts is enough to strengthen them for what they are facing in these days. 

Paul's letter to the Ephesians contains two great prayers we can use to help us pray:

Ephesians 1:17-19  

I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know him,  so that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints,  and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe, according to the working of his great power."

 

Ephesians 3:16-19 

I pray that, according to the riches of his glory, he may grant that you may be strengthened in your inner being with power through His Spirit and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, as you are being rooted and grounded in love.  I pray that you may have the power to comprehend, with all the saints, what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.”

 

Pieter Hermans is part of the team at Manchester House of Prayer.  He has a passion to see Jesus exalted above all else, & every believer, family, and church living a life of intimacy with Him.