We are told in the Word:
- “Train up a child in the way they should go” (Proverbs 22:6)
- “The prayer of a righteous man avails much” (James 5:16)
So we do our work when our children are in the home. We labor endless hours training them in the right way so they will not depart from it when they grow older. We pursue righteousness and hope our prayers avail much. Then our children leave the home, launch out into the world on their own, and become adults with their own families. Does our responsibility to pray without ceasing stop when our children become responsible adults?
I knew I would never stop praying for my children, but I assumed if I had done my job when they were young and in the home, somehow the burden of prayer would lessen. As I have launched four children into adulthood, I have found this idea to be far from true. In fact, reality is quite the opposite. I have found my faith muscle stretched like never before in the area of prayer for my children. I realize the necessity to pray for them seems greater now than when they were young and living at home.
In the midst of a heated discussion I asked my daughter, “Why do you have to have a mind of your own?” “Mom,” she replied empathetically, “you raised us to have an opinion and not be afraid to share our opinion.” Oh that’s right, I thought, and a choice I am glad I made every day of my life. However, in the journey of self-discovery, our children oftentimes move toward independence instead of interdependence on God. So we pray.
When we see our children making choices that seem to lead them away from God, fear or anger is often our first response. However, fear is not of the Lord and we must move past that place of fear into faith. Praying for our adult children helps us exercise our faith muscle like never before.
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