There are many things that call for our attention as mothers, and one that needs to be top on our list is one simple word - to pray. Ranking right up near the top, along with the word love.
Of course, we do pray for our children ... spontaneous prayers all through the day, prayers of thanks, of joy, prayers asking for help with the challenging moments of mothering.
But do we comprehend how important it is for us to fervently, consistently seek God for the lives of our children? For what we long for in our children most of all, above everything else, is that they will seek after Him, and that they will live their lives deeply aware of His love for them, walking closely with Him through all of life. And this is beyond our grasp. This is in the realm of miracles.
Ruth Bell Graham explains it so clearly:
"We mothers must take care of the possible and trust God for the impossible. We are to love, affirm, encourage, teach, listen, and care for the physical needs of the family. We cannot convict of sin, create hunger and thirst after God, or convert. These are miracles, and miracles are not in our department."
Are we willing as moms to give ourselves to praying for our children? Humbly, depending on God for miracles. Or do we think that we can accomplish the impossible? Thinking that miracles are in our own department.
There have been frustrating times in my life as a mom when I attempted, though unknowingly at the time, to accomplish the impossible in my own strength. We are to give our lives for our children, doing all we can possibly do to cultivate their hearts, but we need to depend on our Creator to cause the seeds to sprout and grow. We are to take care of the possible, and depend on, and ask God to do the impossible.
The miracles will come (and I have seen them in my own family), and in the process, another amazing miracle is done. A miracle which affects our own hearts in the process of mothering, of loving, and of praying. And that miracle is what God does in our own hearts.
Jennifer Kennedy Dean says in her study book on prayer, Live a Praying Life, "During the process, God is at work in us shaping us into the image of Christ. The process of prayer results in change in us. During the process of prayer, He is fashioning a heart like His."
As we give our lives to pray for our children (for our grandchildren, and for many others), our hearts become in tune with God's heart. And we are given the incredible opportunity, through prayer, to be part of what He longs to do.
"Rise during the night and cry out.
Pour out your hearts like water to the Lord.
Lift up your hands to Him in prayer,
pleading for your children ..."
(Lamentations 2:19 NLT)
"When you call on Me, I will answer ..."
"Thank You, Lord, for mothering, for giving us this great responsibility and privilege of being molded to Your heart as we pray for our children, depending on You alone. By Your grace and mercy, and for Your glory alone.
A few excellent resources to use as we pray for our children:
The Power of a Praying Parent - by Stormie Omartian
While They Were Sleeping - 12 character traits for moms to pray - by Anne Arkins and Gary Harrell
A Mother's Heart - by Jean Fleming
The Power of Praying for Your Adult Children - by Stormie Omartian
(I am very honored to have this post featured by Laura Krokos on her Beholding Glory blog. She is an amazing example of a woman totally giving her life to her children, and also to ministering to others. I learn a lot by reading her blog, and know that you will be blessed by her, as well. And I love how she always gives all the praise to God, lifting up the Name of Jesus.)