I will never forget the day I sat on my couch as warm tears streamed down my face; I poured out all my sorrow, frustration, and anguish to my husband about what was happening with one of our children. This wasn’t the first time I had done this, nor would it be the last, but this particular day the groaning was about our son Truman, and how I longed to see him healed of the Autism that so negatively affected him and our family. You see I know God has great things for him, and I know he will be completely restored and live and extraordinary life. I know it like I know that this is the month of March. I know it like I know that using the oxford comma is the only proper way to list items in a sentence. But there are some days when living in two different time zones (the reality of the present, and the promise of the future) can feel so hopeless. This was one of those days. I remember saying, “What we are believing for feels so far away! I just need to see some evidence of this thing we are hoping for!” I stopped and heard what I just said. The Holy Spirit reminded me in that moment of Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. And then peace hit me. My faith is the evidence. My faith is the assurance. I don’t need to see the evidence; my faith is the evidence. I believe he will be healed, so he will be healed.
This got me to thinking about my faith. Do I have great faith? Do I pray faith-filled prayers over my children or do I pray fear-filled prayers over them? Do I believe God’s promises and truths without fear? Unfortunately, fear grips me more than I want it to. I have to fight this, but if I were to be vulnerable about my thought life, I tend to use my imagination to think up 101 scenarios of what could go wrong, rather than use it for its divine intended purpose: to imagine 101 faith-filled scenarios that bring heaven to earth. And I know I’m not the only one.
If you’re hit with a situation that is bringing forth a lot of fear in your heart, keeping you from being able to pray in faith, remember Hebrews 11:1. Your faith is the evidence of what you’re hoping for, not the circumstance that has currently presented itself. We tend to look at what’s happening in the moment (a sickness, a tumultuous relationship, or a disappointment) and use that as the “evidence” that it’s all going to end badly. Our faith in Jesus is the reason all things will turn out for our good.
Let’s go on a journey to expel the fear so we can engage in faith-filled prayers for our children! I’ve come up with some helpful steps that I have to go through when fear tries to thwart my faith-filled prayers, and then I am including some faith-filled prayers we can all pray over our children.
- Face it and feel it (with the Lord). Don’t try to ignore the fear or confess it away. That fear is rooted in your past experience and it isn’t going anywhere until you face it head on.
Psalm 142:2 I pour out my complaints before him and tell him all my troubles.
David knew how to bring his junk to God. This is a great model we can use to communicate with God about our messed up emotions and fear. You can journal this or just talk to him out loud. I encourage you to get real with Him, its okay to say, “God, I am so afraid right now. This isn’t looking good for my family or me. I feel so inadequate to handle this. I don’t know which way to go. I am so afraid I will make a mistake that will ruin everything. I don’t know if I can take the pain. I feel so weak.” Make sure you are thorough with this, its really important (for you) that each emotion is identified. Jesus doesn’t need all the emotions identified because He already knows, but you need that for the next step.
- Give all your negative emotions to Jesus.
1 Peter 5:7 Cast your cares on Him because He cares for you.
Once all the emotions are identified, give them one by one to Jesus. Again you can journal this or say it out loud. Say, “Jesus, I give You this fear. I give You these feelings of being inadequate; I know You’ll show me what to do. I give You my whole family, and trust you with them. I give You this fear of making mistakes, and I give myself permission to fumble through this as I hear Your voice. I give You this pain, and I know Your power is made perfect through my weakness, so I surrender that to You.”
- Ask Holy Spirit to come in and comfort and strengthen you.
Ephesians 3:16 that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Sprit in your inner being…
Spend time in His presence until you feel fully comforted. You’ll know you’re “ready” when courage and hope come. The situation won’t change, your perspective does; and suddenly there’s a fight deep within your soul.
- Make a list of promises you know God has shown you about your children and find scripture that will help you war with those. If you don’t know your promises yet, no problem! Ask God for some! And there are plenty in the bible. I have listed just a few prayers you can use to pray for your children with scriptures:
- Thank You, Lord, that You have good plans for my children. They have hope in You of a future that is prosperous. (Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.)
- Thank You, Lord, that any evil that may try to come against my child will never prosper and never succeed against them. (Isaiah 54:17 No weapon formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue which rises against you in judgment you shall condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness if from Me.)
- Thank You, Lord, that you are working behind the scenes to bring restoration and good from situations that seem hopeless. (Romans 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.)
- Thank You, Lord, that You are the God of hope, and all hope comes from you. You are hopeless about nothing, not even my darkest situation. Because of that, I can overflow with hope as I trust all that You’re doing. I can feel the power of the Holy Spirit filling me up with joy and peace. (Romans 15:13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.)
- Thank You, Lord, that I can trust You in all things and I don’t need to understand what’s happening. If I acknowledge You in all I do, You will show me the way to go. I trust you with my children, and I trust that you will show me. (Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him and he will direct your path.)
What prayers do you pray and what scriptures do you declare over your children? Share them in the comments. Let’s learn from each other and pray together for the next generation!
Next Generation Pastor