Parents as Builders

Integrity is the key to building a solid life that will last for eternity.  The foundation upon which the builder’s life is established is critical.  We can not transfer our foundation to the life of another, but we can live in such a way that our foundation is revealed as trustworthy, valuable and worth imitation.

For parents, living with integrity offers great hope for our children’s future.  The beauty of a life built upon God is revealed only when life is lived fully on the foundation.  We can’t pick and choose when we will live for the glory of God–and expect our children will live wholly for Him.  Nor can we expect our children will make the same choices we make.  Our children are entrusted to us by God–but they are HIS kids.  He loves them more than we do, but He desires for us to live in a way that they will see Him in us.

Every aspect of life-building which we endeavor to establish in the lives of our children must exist in our own lives.  As we pray for our children and seek to direct them, we must bare our hearts before God and ask that He reveal any ways in which we may not be living with integrity.

 Perpetual prayer patterns are a large part of my devotional time; they keep me centered on God’s design.  In the coming weeks we will delve into various prayer patterns we can utilize as we seek to build the lives of our children.

Our children are our heritage; individually we are all God’s heritage.  Living lives of lasting love builds an eternal legacy…and eternal heritage.  As you implement these day-by-day prayer focuses, ask the Lord to reveal your own heart and the specific ways in which these principles can be applied to show your child the value God–and you–place upon them as individuals.  Ask Him, too, to reveal if these are the foundations of your life.

  • Monday – Love for God’s Word; an understanding that the Bible is a guide book not a devotional.
  • Tuesday – Passion for a pure heart centered on God
  • Wednesday – Health and safety in body, soul and spirit
  • Thursday – Value system founded on God’s purposes
  • Friday – Thankful living
  • Saturday – Godly friends
  • Sunday – Growing faith

For a fuller look at these prayer areas, visit Growing Up in Christ.  Contact me if you would like to receive a ‘perpetual prayer list’ on Christian Character traits!

Growing Up in Christ

God parents each of us perfectly!  Growing in grace and knowledge as Jesus did is an individual responsibility.  But we all–whether we have children or not–have opportunities to disciple (or spiritually parent) others.  This prayer guide is a tool ifor the growing up process–for ourselves and others.

Parenting is a privilege and responsibility that allows us co-laborer closely with the Lord in the soul-building process. He has provided powerful tools to utilize in our work.
The Word of God is our primary tool; it is indeed a living and active tool. It is critical for our lives and our children’s lives. Love for God’s Word…for its necessity and tremendous value in each life…is the key to unlocking and utilizing this vital building block.

This ‘perpetual’ prayer guide has seven focus areas—one for each day of the week. Our prayers matter and keep us in tune with the Lord—for the reality is that all we pray for others must be sought for ourselves as well. May this prayer guide draw you and yours ever closer to Jesus Christ, the author and perfecter of our faith!

Prayer Focus: Love of God’s Word 

Father in heaven, we praise you for the gift of Your Word. We praise you for the Living Word, Jesus Christ. And we praise you for our privilege of using words to communicate with others. Only humanity was allowed this precious gift. Lord we ask that You help us use words well with our children. Instill in our children a love for Your Word. Help them to understand and help us to live with the scriptures as our guide and not simply a pleasant source of encouragement. Help our children understand that every aspect of life is blessed by wisdom from the Word. Help us model for our children a desire to read, study, remember and apply Your Word moment by moment. We desire your plans and purposes for our children; we long for them to live lives of blessing. May Your Word be a light unto their path for their good and for your glory. We ask in Jesus’ name, Amen.

Scripture supports:

Psalm 119:9, 72, 72, 140; Jeremiah 15:16; Ephesians 6:17; 1 Peter 1:22

Prayer Focus: Growing Faith 

Father, knowing you is the most important thing our children will ever experience. We ask that you meet with them in personal and transforming ways. Grow their spirits into ever greater likeness to Christ. Give us wisdom to point them to you. Grant us a depth of faith in your love for them that we do not interfere with your work. Reveal yourself to our children and draw them to your irresistible glory. Strengthen them in their inner being with your Spirit and be glorified in the lives of our children. In Jesus name, Amen

Scripture supports:

2 Corinthians 9:10; Ephesians 4:15; Hebrews 6:1; 2 Peter 1:5,6; 3:18; 3 John 1:4

Prayer Focus: Godly Friends 

Heavenly Father, thank you for your passion for relationships. We lift our children up to you asking that you will orchestrate their lives that Godly friends will bring beauty and sweetness to their days. We ask for friends that will encourage them to walk closely with you; friends that will look at Your glory with them; friends who will stand in the gap when they are unable to seek You. We praise you for your gift of love that we can love others. Work in our children’s lives and in each of their relationships that they will know You more day by day. In Jesus precious name, Amen

Scripture supports:

Malachi 3:16; Acts 2:42; Philippians 1:3: James 2:23

Prayer Focus: Thankfulness 

Father in Heaven, we rejoice that the key to entering Your presence is PRAISE! Help us guide our children to the joy of thankfulness. Teach us, Lord, to fix our eyes on that which is praiseworthy and life-building…and fill our hearts with joy and awe. We thank you, Lord, that You created all things for us to enjoy and we only have to remember they are from You. We thank you, Lord, that even hard things can become blessings when You are sought. Help us instill that in our children that they will live every day with thanksgiving and rejoicing for Jesus’ sake, Amen.

Scripture Supports:

Deuteronomy 8:10; Psalm 100:4; Colossians 1:12; 3:15; 1 Thessalonians 5:18

Prayer Focus: Values 

Father, help us as parents teach your values and live Your values that our children will see Your glory and choose the same values for their lives. Grant our children a vision of the value You place on every individual and the treasure of time. May every choice made–in career, in recreation, in friendships, in money and even thoughts be founded upon Your value system. We ask this for the glory of God and the good of these precious children You have entrusted to us! In Christ’s name, Amen

Scripture supports:

Joshua 24:15; John 4:34; 17:4; Acts 20:24; Philippians 3:13

Prayer Focus: Health and Safety for Body, Mind and Soul 

Heavenly Father, lover of our children’s souls, we ask Your protection of their bodies, minds and spirit. Total well-being is a by-product of a God-ward focus so we ask you to orchestrate their lives so that a desire for Your will and Your glory will be their greatest passion. May our example as parents not derail them in any way; hold us close to You and convict us of disparities in our own walk. Strengthen the children, Lord, to exercise discipline in their physical, emotional, spiritual and intellectual pursuits and to submit all to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. May our children’s lives–and our own–have a depth of integrity, an alignment with Your Word of thoughts, words and actions, which will reveal Your glory to all those we come in contact with. We praise You for the gift of the life of Christ which lives within Your children and we ask all this in His name, Amen.

Scripture supports:

Psalm 26:3; Psalm 86:11; 2 John 4; Isaiah 32:18

Prayer Focus: Passion for a Pure Heart 

Father in Heaven, we long to see You and to have our children see You. Your glory is our source of hope and confidence in a world of challenges. Lord, work in our children’s hearts and open their eyes to see You…to see Your amazing love, Your righteousness and Your open arms. Instill in the hearts of our children–and in our hearts–an ever-increasing desire to walk in Your presence and behold Your glory. Might the greatest desire of our hearts be to please You with every choice we make in thought, word and deed and might that same desire be in the hearts of our children. We praise You for who You are and how You work and for the purifying, perfect work of Jesus Christ. In His name, we ask this…Amen.

Scripture Supports:

Malachi 3:3; 2 Corinthians 7:1; Hebrews 12:14; 1 John 1:7

Prayer Tools

The last few weeks have offered numerous opportunities to share information on developing a prayer habit–especially through the use of a prayer journal.  One of the tools that helped me prayer fervently and effectively was ‘perpetual lists.’  The link below provides a document with three of those key lists:

31 Days of Prayer focused on Christian Character

31 Days of Prayer for our leaders

31 Days of Prayer based on God’s purposes for the Church

For more information on deepening your prayer-life, the Fit Faith Prayer Workshop PDF may be of use–or contact me to schedule a workshop for your group.

Building a Home

Understanding God’s design for the home is critical because it is what gives our home a solid foundation.  No matter how long we have been married, we need to keep a scriptural view of marriage in the forefront of our mind.

Marriage/Family is:

• A declaration of ‘choosing to love.’ An imitation of God’s creation choice.

• A choice to create a new life—at the expense of self.

• A union created by God; a new life given by Him & sustained by Him

• A mission field, a university of instruction on unity; forum for learning to love unselfishly-unconditionally; forum to learn to build a relationship

• Treasure to be valued, honored and protected

• Intended to produce life—fruit of Godly children (perhaps natural, certainly spiritual children—and produce growth in partners as children of God.)

• Intended to produce the image of Christ’s relationship with the church; two becoming one as we are to be one with Christ as the church is to be united with Christ.

Not intended to fulfill my personal purposes of companionship, pleasure & fulfillment—though those outcomes will result IF my focus is on God’s purposes

Prayer is a necessity:

• Seek scriptures for one another. Wrestle for each other. Colossians 4:12

• Seek to see God’s work and His glory revealed to children. Build a legacy. Psalm 90:16,17

• Triumph is in mercy. Hide in Jesus. James 2:13

• Be confident in God! Hebrews 10:35

 

Families are the foundation of every society…the fabric of the world.  Christian homes are to be a place of nurturing and truth.  Honoring the heritage we have received helps us celebrate both the past and the future.  The Family Heritage Guide is a fun family activity.  Interview elder family members–share your own stories.  Celebrate the gift of family!

Will you commit to pray for your home to be built on the Word of God…and will you commit to pray for other families as well?