THE PRACTICE OF PRAYER

Family Discipleship
by Analisa Hood

Keep asking, and it will be given to you. Keep searching, and you will find. Keep knocking, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who searches finds, and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.  Matthew 7:7-8 (HCSB)

Most of us desire our children to have a growing, vibrant relationship with God. Like all thriving relationships, our children need to know our relationship with God requires good and constant communication. Prayer is an ongoing conversation that helps us deepen our friendship with God.

No one feels like they have time to add another task to an already full schedule. However, we all want resources that enable us to boldly face daily challenges and situations. Parents can lead children to discover that prayer is a tool and not a task.

Through prayer, we have a way to express our thoughts and emotions. The God of all creation cares about everything that touches our lives. He is a loving, compassionate listener. Prayer allows us to develop a special connection to God. Prayer gives us access to God’s direction for us and His strength to stand against evil. When we link to God through prayer, we bring God’s presence and His power into every situation.

In asking, we receive God’s wisdom; in seeking, we find God’s faithfulness; in knocking, we discover God’s goodness for us. Together, parents and children can see how prayer fuels a growing relationship with God.

Prayer: Lord, Your thoughts are always toward me even when my thoughts are not toward You. Remind me daily that there is none that compares to You and there never will be. Give me an opportunity to share this with another person who needs Your touch today.

“Do not have your concert first, and then tune your instrument afterwards. Begin the day with the Word of God and prayer, and get first of all into harmony with Him.” -Hudson Taylor

Engage10K Request: Pray for the Prayer Team led by Lesa Schwartz and Karen Bozeman.

Merge Moment: The Five Finger Prayer Guide
Helping students and children learn to pray is important to a family’s spiritual growth. One way to help everyone in your family – regardless of their age – remember how to pray is to follow the “five finger prayer.” The thumb represents “Lord, I love you.” The pointer is “Lord, I thank you.” The middle finger should stand for “Lord, I’m sorry.” The ring finger is “Someone needs Your help, Lord.” Finally, the pinkie means, “Help me, Lord.” As a final part of praying, the palm symbolizes, “I’m listening, Lord.” These are sentence beginnings that should be completed by the one praying. For example, you might pray, “Lord, I love You because You sent Jesus to die for me.” If you have young children, you might even draw around their hands on a sheet of paper and help them fill in the words so they can remember what to pray. Practice this together until it becomes part of your prayer routine.