Prayer is essential for growing your faith, so take the time to teach your kids to pray! Kids need a mentor to show them how to pray so they can begin to understand that a Great Conversation can lead to Great Transformation.
Teaching How to Pray
Amazingly, a parent will make time to teach kids how to tie their shoes and ride a bike, but forget to teach spiritual growth. Sometimes, parents consider it a job of the church to teach prayer or they don’t have an active prayer life themselves. Let me encourage you to teach kids the importance of talking to God, even at a young age! It is one of the most important lessons your child will learn! Most of all, it will lead to a deep relationship with a Heavenly Father who is more powerful than any earthly parent.
Praying can be tough stuff for a kid! Questions like…”What do I say?” “Will anyone laugh at me?”, or “What were the prayer requests”… can be stumbling blocks to a kid. (Or an adult!) Follow these 4 simple steps to teach you kids how to pray with confidence!
Bring God to the forefront of your home by praying out loud so your kids can “see” the importance of your prayer life. Typically, families are comfortable praying at church or before meals. The teaching begins when you are able to show your kids praying is not an event, but a continuous conversation. Sometimes we feel weird telling our kids we are going to stop and pray for a need. A good example is when I know one of my girls is worried about school. Instead of giving her a hug and saying it’s going to be ok, I’ll pray out loud so she knows she isn’t alone. I’ll encourage her to pray at school. Also, if someone asks you to pray for them, stop and pray out loud. As the kids get a glimpse into your prayer life, they will truly understand that prayer matters.
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. Ephesians 6:18
Make prayer “real” so your kids will know that God is available anytime and anywhere! When you see an ambulance, pray! Pray for the one suffering as well as the EMS and the doctors. Pray out loud in your cool minivan with the kids thinking you’re crazy. When my youngest was in preschool and the other three were in school, I’d pray every time we passed their school. Eventually, she would say, “God help the kids”, or “Help the teachers.” How incredible that they now understand God is real and we can talk to Him anytime, anywhere
- Authentic Prayer comes from an authentic relationship with God.
- Authentic Prayer overflows from the heart.
Even though I love hearing the preschool prayer Thank You, Father, I’d encourage you to have them pray from the heart starting young. Thanksgiving is a great place to start with preschools. They can begin to realize all the blessings in their lives. As they get older they can learn to do more than give thanks, such as pray for others and tell Him their needs. Sometimes all the kids want to pray before dinner and we let them! It can get really long but I know how precious that time really is. One day our kids will grow to be the leaders in their home.
Recently I was leading a missions class and realized that the kids need a “how to” for praying. I created this dollar store interactive journal that emphasizes PRAY! You can read more about it here! PRAY stands for
- Praise God
- Remember Blessings
- Ask for Forgiveness
- Your Needs and Others
The importance of this journal is that kids can write prayer requests in divided sections, and they can flip through their journal to pray. It’s easy and most readers can do this independently. (We know I’m all about that) What a great habit to have and to continue into adulthood!
How are you helping your children grow in their faith?