My three girls go back to school next week. I can’t believe another summer break has come and gone. I will have a 7th grader, a 5th grader, and a 2nd grader. With a new school year come many changes: new classes, new teachers, new classmates, new schedules, and new prayers. Prayers for safety, perfect teachers, perfect friends, perfect bus-riding buddies. And I’m comfortable praying “safe” prayers (when God answers “yes” to all my “perfects”). I’ve even prayed safe prayers with other moms at “Moms in Prayer “(formerly “Moms in Touch”) the last three years.
So what happens when God decides to use school as a “growing faith” place for our children. Do we pray for them to be rescued? Or, do we pray for them to learn in the battle? Just think about what our children could learn this year in “not so perfect” situations.
When our children are bullied, they learn to forgive and show love like Jesus did.
When our children’s teacher is unfair, they learn to submit to authority.
When our children’s friend has a different faith, they use apologetics (defending our faith).
When our children have difficulty with friends, they learn to compromise and become peacemakers.
When our children have difficulty with a new class, they learn perseverance.
When our children don’t get the classes they want, they must choose joy.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not praying specifically for these “not so perfect” situations for my children. But, I do want to pray “surrendered prayers” for my children (prayers surrendering my control over my children to God’s control over my children).
Henry and Richard Blackaby in“Experiencing God Day by Day” wrote a devotional about Caleb’s faith. When the Israelites divided the land, Caleb asked for a mountain. “If you always choose the easy way, asking for the peaceful valleys, you will never see God’s power displayed to enable you to take the mountain.”
Our children may face many mountains this school year. I may be stepping out on a limb here. But, what if I go so far as to not pray for the “perfects” anymore (unsafe). I’m realizing that praying surrendered, unsafe prayers (leaving total control to our heavenly Father) are actually the safest prayers we could pray.
What do you pray for your children?
Is it difficult to pray surrendered prayers? Why? Why not?