When my daughter was a baby, praying for her every night as she slept was a priority for me. Every single night, before my husband and I went to bed, I would disappear into the darkness of her room to stand over her, lay my hands on her back, and pray.
I prayed for her then like I have never prayed for anyone else, before or since. It was a matter of urgency for me, realizing that God Himself had entrusted this tiny person to me and that I had absolutely no idea how to do what was being asked of me. I prayed and I cried and I spent many cumulative hours crying, even, over her crib. I prayed like her life depended on it.
But then she got older, and getting her to sleep became more of a struggle. Venturing into her room at all once we turned off her light was risky, and touching her or lingering by her bed was out of the question unless I wanted to begin the whole bedtime routine all over again. My nightly prayers changed. The content was much the same, but the fervency and urgency was not. I was more comfortable with the idea of being a mama, and months of new experiences and conquering new challenges had brought on a degree of complacency with my prayers.
Before long, my nightly prayers became a thing of the past. I’m just being honest.
In the years since then, I have repeatedly been convicted of my careless and sloppy prayer life, especially as it relates to my daughter and to my husband. They are the most important people in my world, and while my conversations with my friends often revolve around them, I rarely talk about them with any great depth with God. Yes, I pray for their health and safety and random day-to-day things they have going on, but I don’t spend intentional time and effort speaking truth over their lives and boldly approaching the Throne on their behalf.
I suspect I’m not the only one. The nature of family makes it too easy for us to take our people for granted. It’s easy to let life get in the way. If you’re like me, prayer is one of the most difficult spiritual disciplines anyway, so you start off at a disadvantage.
Recently I decided to take a more deliberate approach in my prayers for the people I love the most. Because my attention span is poor and my self discipline is disgraceful, though, I knew I needed structure and accountability if I wanted it to stick.
With that in mind, I am starting tomorrow with a month-long series walking myself through the discipline of praying for my family. It is my hope that this will create a lasting habit for me, obviously, but also that it will be a resource for you to pray through as well. I have selected topics and scriptures that cover many of the issues families face and that I feel responsible for praying over my own family. It is not an exhaustive list, but I am hoping and praying that it helps to get the conversation going and the habit engrained.
Each day I will add the link for that day below. If you want the day’s devotion delivered directly to your inbox, you can subscribe (to the right, in the sidebar). I hope you’ll join me as I take this journey, and I pray you and your families will be blessed through it.