I’m not really great at prayer. Often, I feel like I’m just saying the same few things over and over again. Recently though, I’ve started praying words straight from the Bible. Among other benefits, praying the Bible helps me to focus on the greater picture of God’s plan, rather than only on my own circumstances. It is good to pray about situations in my own life, but it’s also good to focus on others.
I don’t believe that praying this way is a Scriptural mandate, but it’s been helpful for me. Many Bible passages were originally prayers. Some of the Psalms fall into that category. As a teenager, I read through the book of Psalms and noticed that several chapters consisted of the psalmist lamenting to God about his problems. I affectionately dubbed these the “why me???” Psalms. I believe that God included those for a reason. People in the Bible had problems, just like we do today.
Passages that describe people who were obedient to the Lord can also inspire prayers. Lord, give me the courage of Daniel and his friends in the lion’s den…Help me to stand up for what is right, even in the face of opposition…
The following 5 verses are great for praying for your child or children. One of the best things you can do as a parent is to pray.
- Numbers 6:24-26
The Lord bless you and keep you. The Lord make His face shine upon you and be gracious to you. The Lord lift up His countenance upon you and give you peace. – Numbers 6:24-26 NKJV
I’ve been praying this passage over my toddler every night after he goes to sleep. As a mom, one of my greatest desires is to keep him safe. Ultimately though, God is in control of his life, and of every person’s life. “The Lord bless you and keep you.” I pray for God to keep him safe and to help him sleep peacefully.
2. 2 Peter 3:18
But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen. – 2 Peter 3:18 NASB
My mom used to pray this verse for me. I want my son to learn more about God as he gets older. This verse also reminds me that I’m supposed to be teaching him about the Bible. How will he learn if he is not taught, and who has more responsibility for that than me?
3. 3 John 1:4
I have no greater joy than this, to hear of my children walking in the truth. – 3 John 1:4 NASB
I pray for my little boy to get saved and to follow God. This verse was talking about spiritual children, rather than biological children. In either case though, children who follow God are a source of joy!
4. 1 Peter 3:15
But sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence. – 1 Peter 3:15 NASB
There was a time when claiming to be a Christian was the default response in the United States. The social pressure to be at least nominally Christian has diminished, and a growing percentage of adult Americans give the response “none” when asked what religion they practice.
Given that this is the reality now, it’s perhaps more important than ever to teach kids to be comfortable with being different, and to be comfortable with discussing why they’re different in a gentle and kind way.
5. Hebrews 13:6-7
So that we confidently say, “The Lord is my helper, I will not be afraid, what will man do to me?” – Hebrews 13:6-7 NASB
It’s important to follow God’s commands, even when it’s scary and unpopular. I want to instill that in my son. The Bible tells us not to be afraid hundreds of times. Ultimately, what can humans do to us? For Christians, even physical death can’t separate us from God.
What are some of your favorite verses to pray over your children?