Jesus called a little child to him and put the child among them. Then he said, “I tell you the truth, unless you turn from your sins and become like little children, you will never get into the Kingdom of Heaven. So anyone who becomes as humble as this little child is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven.
Matthew 18:2-4 (NLT)
Children are amazing; they grow and learn so quickly. If there is one thing that I want to teach my children, it is to run after God with everything they that are. Every night before I fall asleep I think about what I did that day with and for my kids. Did I play enough with them enough? Did they drink enough water? Did they have fun? Did I show them how much I love them? Did I tell them how much God loves them? Did I pray with them?
Every night before bed we pray with Liam; daddy prays, then mommy, and then Liam. Such sweet prayers coming from Liam’s mouth. “Thank you Jesus for my family, and thank you Jesus for my food. Thank you for my grandpa and my Allie. Aaaaaaamen!” This season is so precious, but it is also fleeting. I only have so much time to raise this little boy to be a man of God. It’s a big job and my greatest calling.
A few weeks ago I wrote about having a threenager and the emotions and attitude that come with this age. I was on the phone with my mom one morning asking her for wisdom on how to deal with my little boy’s disobedience and attitude. As we talked, she told me that she wished she would have prayed with me more and encouraged me to do this with Liam. We always pray before bed, but honestly we had been lacking in the prayer department during every day life (besides before meals or for scrapes and bruises.) What better way to combat this toddler ‘tude than getting down on our knees together and asking God to help both of us when emotions are running high? Not only will God meet us there in our frustration, but I will be teaching my son how to pray and when to pray.
Instead of sending him to his bedroom, we’ve been holding hands and praying. I start to pray and have him repeat the prayer. “God please help me to make good choices. Help me talk to my mommy nicely. Help me to eat my food. Help me to be a good listener.” And then instead of crying and feeling frustrated we hugging and moving on with our day knowing the King of Kings is listening to our prayers and that He is with us. Liam may not quite understand what it means yet, but I do know that it is making an impact. When he gets hurt or when he feels sick, he knows that he should pray. What I’m hoping is that when he is feeling frustrated or mad that he will know that he should stop and pray. I want that to be his first instinct so that he can always be relying on God to help him. He has that child like faith inside of him, and I want him to use that and pray big prayers even at three years old, because I know God hears him.
Liam is soaking up everything. He’s always watching us and learning from us. I want to be a family that prays together, worships together, reads the bible together. I want our kids to know who we turn to and lean on in every situation. Because I know that I will fail them over and over, but Jesus never will. He loves them more than I do, which is kind of hard to wrap my head around because I stinkin’ LOVE my babies. He knit them together in my womb and knows everything about them, even the number of hairs on their sweet little heads.
If I can do one thing for my children, it is to point them to the Father every chance I get.