15 Ways to Make Prayer a Natural Part Of Your Everyday Family Life (Part 1)

Here are the first eight ways to make prayer a natural part of your everyday family life (thanks to Kim Butts!). If you don’t have kids, this list is still worth reading and implementing in your own life.

I’ll post the final seven ways tomorrow. If patience is not one of your many virtues, I give you permission to download a free PDF of this entire list. Otherwise, give yourself something to look forward to tomorrow, and wait for the rest of the list.
 
1. Help your children to become aware of answered prayer.
Tell them about the times in your life when God has answered your prayers. Encourage them to share when God answers their prayers even if His answer isn't what they wanted or expected. When you have other believers-especially missionaries and full-time Christian workers-in your home, ask them to tell you about answered prayers they have experienced. Point out God's answers to your children's prayers, even the smallest requests.

2. Help your children to see the beauty of God's creation and thank Him for it.
Don't miss opportunities to appreciate His handiwork around you. Take time to point out sunsets and beautiful flowers . . . and thank God for them right then.

3. Whenever you see or hear about someone in need, take time to pray about it with your children.
It could be something on the news or in the paper, or something you come across during the course of your day. Teaching them to pray when they see an accident or when you pass a homeless person could have a lasting influence not only on your children, but on those who are prayed for.

4. Wrap family traditions or events in special times of prayer.
For example, lay hands on the person with a birthday and bless him or her; thank the Lord for two things that you love about her, etc. At Thanksgiving, go around the table and have each family member pray about what he or she is most thankful for over the past year.

5. Pray blessings over your children.
Lay hands on them at bedtime or at another time when they are hurting in some way, and pray scriptural blessings over them. Numbers 6:24-26 is a good one to memorize: "The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace."

6. Teach your children to prayerfully put on the armor of God (Eph. 6:10-18) at the beginning of each new day.
Each of us needs to be aware that we are in a battle and that God has provided us with some very important equipment with which to protect ourselves and fight. This can be done as a family, but don't ritualize it or make it a legalistic thing.

7. Have family devotions and prayer time.
While any time is good, early mornings before everyone goes separate ways is probably the best time. This will remind children that God will be with them throughout the day.

8. Put together a family prayer journal.
Place each family member's picture in it, as well as pictures of your pastor and his family, relatives, unsaved friends, and neighbors. Pray through the album together, and encourage one another to pray individually on a daily basis for those represented.

So . . . what do you think? Which of these suggestions would be most helpful to your family’s prayer life? Do you have any other tips to share with us?

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About the Author

Paula Marsteller

Paula Marsteller

Paula has served with Revive Our Hearts for thirteen years. She is the author of Confessions of a Boy-Crazy Girl: On Her Journey from Neediness to Freedom. There's nothing she loves to share more than the gospel-centered truths that have so transformed her own life: what it means on a daily basis to be "dead to sin, alive to God, and in Christ Jesus." Paula, Trevor, and their son, Iren, make their home in New York.

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