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Pray for Your Children: 3 Prayers Rich with God’s Word

3 Prayers You Can Pray for Your Children, an article by Todd Hains

Every morning and every evening I pray for my children. 

I pray the words God has placed over my children and over me. Because God’s Word interprets the world, these words are how God wants me to see my children.

In baptism, God has given my children his name: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Because they have God’s family name, they belong to God—they are his beloved children. God has given me his name in baptism too, and I pray my children would see my wife and me as God’s beloved children too. We are the lost who have been found; we are sinners who have been forgiven.

Related article by Dr. Todd Hains:
Family Discipleship: 5 Easy Things You Can Do with Your Kids

And God has placed his commandment over my wife and me: “Honor your father and mother.” I pray that my children would honor us, because of this word from God and that we would not provoke our children to anger but catechize them in the Lord (Eph 6:4).

This is my own habit. You might also simply pray through your child’s day and the things they’ll face. Or you might use some old prayers. Here are three favorites of mine:

1. A prayer for the children of the church

This prayer is taken from the American Lutheran prayer book tradition. (It is included at the front of the core FatCat books: The Apostles’ Creed, The Lord’s Prayer, and The Ten Commandments.)

Almighty and everlasting God, you sent your only Son to seek and to save the lost, saying through him, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for to such belong the kingdom of God.” It is not your will that even one of these little ones should perish. Bless and govern the children of your church by your Holy Spirit, that they may grow in grace and in the knowledge of your Word; protect and defend them against all danger and harm, giving your holy angels charge over them; through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord. Amen.

I say my children’s names after “govern the children of your church”: “especially Franklin and Milo.”

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2. A short prayer for children

This prayer is taken from the 1979 Book of Common Prayer. It’s a sweet and simple prayer that I find myself meditating on often:

Almighty God, heavenly Father, you have blessed us with the joy and care of children. Give us calm strength and patient wisdom as we bring them up, that we may teach them to love whatever is just and true and good, following the example of our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

I say my children’s names after “the joy and care of children”: “the joy and care of Franklin and of Milo.”

3. A prayer for kids’ protection

At the end of the day, I pray a prayer of protection over my children. This prayer is taken out of Compline (a brief order of prayer for just before going to bed). You can find in the 1979 Book of Common Prayer:

Visit this place, O Lord, and drive far from it all snares of the enemy. Send your holy angels to protect us and to keep us in peace. Let your blessing be upon us always; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

In place of “us” I pray my children’s names: “protect Franklin and Milo and keep them in peace.” And I before the prayer I mark them with the cross of Christ while saying God’s name: “In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.”

These are just a few ways to pray for your children and your life as a parent. Find ways to build prayer for your children into the routine of your life—just like eating and brushing your teeth and sleeping! See what works for you. Maybe it’s just praying a Bible verse as simple as “Jesus, have mercy on me” (Mark 10:47), or “Hear my prayer, O LORD” (Ps 102:1).

God is your loving heavenly Father, and he wants to hear from you, just as you want to hear from your children—whether they’re angry or happy or sad or confused. Our dear Lord is always more ready to hear than we are to pray.

The King of Easter Searches for All God's Children. Get the FatCat book for kids now.

Resources for family discipleship

The Apostles’ Creed: For All God’s Children (A FatCat Book)

The Apostles’ Creed: For All God’s Children (A FatCat Book)

Regular price: $12.99

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The King of Easter: Jesus Searches for All God’s Children (A FatCat Book)

The King of Easter: Jesus Searches for All God’s Children (A FatCat Book)

Regular price: $12.99

Add to cart
The Lord’s Prayer: For All God’s Children (A FatCat Book)

The Lord’s Prayer: For All God’s Children (A FatCat Book)

Regular price: $12.99

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The King of Christmas: All God’s Children Search for Jesus (A FatCat Book)

The King of Christmas: All God’s Children Search for Jesus (A FatCat Book)

Regular price: $12.99

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The Lord’s Prayer: A Guide to Praying to Our Father

The Lord’s Prayer: A Guide to Praying to Our Father

Regular price: $12.99

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God’s Word: A Guide to Holy Scripture

God’s Word: A Guide to Holy Scripture

Regular price: $12.99

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The Ten Commandments: A Guide to the Perfect Law of Liberty

The Ten Commandments: A Guide to the Perfect Law of Liberty

Regular price: $9.99

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The Apostles’ Creed: A Guide to the Ancient Catechism

The Apostles’ Creed: A Guide to the Ancient Catechism

Regular price: $12.99

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Written by
Todd Hains

Todd R. Hains (PhD, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School) is author of Martin Luther and the Rule of Faith: Reading God’s Word for God’s People. He is the editor of Lexham Press’s Christian Essentials series, Lexham Ministry Guides, and FatCat Books. He and his wife, Veronica, have two children, two cats, and four chickens. He is also the author of two children’s books, The King of Christmas: All God’s Children Search for Jesus and The King of Easter: Jesus Searches for All God’s Children.

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Written by Todd Hains