Is Prayer Your First Response as a Parent?

Kim Anderson writes for the Modern-Day Joseph parenting blog

I have been driven many times to my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had absolutely no other place to go.

I can’t take credit for this quote. Abraham Lincoln said it over 150 years ago. But the truth of his words applies to us today, especially as parents.

Parenting should drive us to our knees in prayer on a daily basis.

Does it? Is prayer the first thing you think of during a parenting challenge?

If I’m brutally honest, prayer is not always my first instinct. I mistakenly think I can solve a parenting problem or issue on my own strength, sinking into a pit of self-sufficiency. All along, God is waiting for me to surrender it over to Him and ask for His wisdom.

Sometimes I find it helpful to pray specifically for my two girls. Several years ago, I came across this list of 31 biblical virtues to pray for my kids. Perhaps it will encourage you to pray each day for your kids’ spiritual development.

1. Pray for a spirit of humility.

The willingness to submit—James 4:10

2. Pray for a spirit of reverence.

The fear of the Lord—Proverbs 9:10

3. Pray for a spirit of purity.

A desire to be clean—Matthew 5:8

4. Pray for a spirit of purpose.

A wisdom to set goals—Proverbs 4:25

5. Pray for a spirit of simplicity.

A lifestyle uncluttered—Romans 12:8

6. Pray for a spirit of commitment.

A dedication to the “cause”—Joshua 24:15

7. Pray for a spirit of diligence.

A willingness to work hard—2 Peter 1:5

8. Pray for a spirit of servanthood.

The ministry of helps—Galatians 6:9-10

9. Pray for a spirit of consistency.

The quality of faithfulness—James 1:8

10. Pray for a spirit of assurance.

A depth of faith—Hebrews 10:22

11. Pray for a spirit of availability.

A willingness to go—Isaiah 6:8

12. Pray for a spirit of loyalty.

A zeal for fidelity—Ruth 1:16

13. Pray for a spirit of sensitivity.

Openness of heart—Luke 10:30-37

14. Pray for a spirit of compassion.

Love in action—Mark 8:1-2

15. Pray for a spirit of tenderness.

A willingness to weep—2 Kings 22:19

16. Pray for a spirit of maturity.

The capacity to grow—Hebrews 5:12-14

17. Pray for a spirit of holiness.

Christ-like behavior—1 Peter 1:16

18. Pray for a spirit of reliability.

A depth of dependability—1 Corinthians 4:2

19. Pray for a spirit of revelation.

Learning to listen—Ephesians 1:15-18

20. Pray for a spirit of denial.

A sacrifice to surrender—Luke 9:23

21. Pray for a spirit of confidence.

A baptism of boldness—Philippians 4:13

22. Pray for a spirit of integrity.

The quality of truthfulness—Romans 12:17

23. Pray for a spirit of repentance.

A willingness to change—Luke 3:8

24. Pray for a spirit of trust.

A fearless reliance—Psalm 125:1

25. Pray for a spirit of submission.

Choosing to yield—Ephesians 5:21

26. Pray for a spirit of teachability.

A quality of meekness—Titus 3:2

27. Pray for a spirit of prayer.

A longing to wait—Isaiah 40:31

28. Pray for a spirit of unity.

A respect for others—1 Corinthians 1:10

29. Pray for a spirit of restoration.

A ministry of healing—Isaiah 61:1-2

30. Pray for a spirit of authority.

A capacity to command—Matthew 16:19

31. Pray for a spirit of generosity.

The desire to give—Matthew 10:8

How do you pray for your children?

This entry was posted on Tuesday, February 8th, 2011 at 4:20 am and is filed under Prayer. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

5 Responses to “Is Prayer Your First Response as a Parent?”

  1. Tweets that mention Raising a Modern-Day Joseph -- Topsy.com Says:

    February 8th, 2011 at 7:12 pm

    [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Awana and bethedadtoday, Awana at Home. Awana at Home said: Blog: 31 attributes to pray for your children http://bit.ly/eC1kyd [...]

  2. John W Says:

    March 3rd, 2011 at 4:09 pm

    This is so great. Thank you!

  3. Jobanna Lee Says:

    March 4th, 2011 at 3:57 am

    What a great tool for prayer!!!
    Thank you so much.
    <

  4. P Emmanuel Says:

    March 4th, 2011 at 5:14 pm

    very very important instruction,
    it is so much need for this generation
    God’s plans is eternal plans for everybody
    thank you for this wonderful points.

  5. Cathy Moorman Says:

    March 7th, 2011 at 3:04 am

    Wow! Thank you so much. God has used you to help me in such a huge way. Thank you again so very much. May God bless you for serving Him.

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About the Authors
Jeff Smith
Jeff Smith is editorial manager of Awana. He and his wife have two children. Jeff has written three curriculum books for Awana.
Kim Anderson
Kim Anderson is a Web copywriter for Awana. She and her husband have daughters in sixth and ninth grade. Kim is a former youth ministry leader at her church who has co-written six books on youth ministry.
Linda Massey Weddle
Linda Weddle is senior U.S. program designer at Awana. She grew up in Awana, her children took part in Awana, and now her grandchildren all are in Awana. Linda is author of How to Raise a Modern-Day Joseph.