I am not a morning person. I am the type of person who doesn’t talk for about an hour after waking up (well, at least that was the case before kids). When in college, my roommates would ask me if I was mad at them in the mornings as I was not my usual cheerful self. They soon realized I was just half-awake (or half-asleep) and gave me the grace I desperately needed first thing in the morning. I guess it is not my finest hour.
All that to say that it is unusual for me to wake up before absolutely necessary. I hate to admit that it is not unusual for me to hit the snooze button a time or two (or three). However, one morning not too long ago, I was awoken at 5:00 a.m. when I heard Austin, my youngest son, scream, “Mom!” It was so loud that I sprung up, almost jumping out of bed…but he was not really there. He was not awake and not in my bedroom. I felt unsettled and immediately began to pray rather than go back to sleep like I would have normally tried to do. I’m not sure why I was prompted to pray but just felt I needed to pray. I prayed for his safety. And even though it felt ridiculous, I prayed for “all the Austin’s in the world”. I went to his bedroom and prayed circles around him (read “Draw the Circle” by Mark Batterson!). I laid beside him and prayed some more.
I felt at peace after a bit, but I was reminded about how we cannot relent as praying parents. What a calling being a parent is, one of the most important missions you will ever have. After a while it was time to start our day, so I went on to get my two boys up and ready for school. After dropping them off, I shared my experience with my circle of friends in a text message. We were all reading “Draw the Circle” together, and I felt led to share my morning’s experience with them. Then it became clear why God prompted me to pray for “all the Austin’s in the world.” One of my friend’s has a family member named Austin, and she had been circling him in prayer too. It was an amazing experience for all of us to see God speaking to us and working in our lives and in the lives of our family!
As if I needed any other explanation for the strange prayer and the morning’s events, I read another devotional that amazed me. It was about a woman who had been asked by a church member to pray for her friend’s grandson because her grandson had the same name as her son. The woman went on to say, “I was very aware at that moment that I couldn’t remember when the last time was that I prayed for my son except for the occasional plea when their behavior was bad.” (Find the devotional at www.Bible.com/Living the Surrendered Life Day 5 or click here and read Day 5).
Parents, I don’t know about you, but this hit me hard. How true is it that we, as parents, can go through life praying for safety when they leave for school, but do not take the time to really pray for their lives on an ongoing basis? Our children need us to pray for them no matter what their circumstances are. 1 Thessalonians 5:17 says “Never stop praying.” Our children have real enemies, enemies that want to steal, kill and destroy them (John 10:10). But the bible also says that “The prayer of a person living right with God is something powerful to be reckoned with” James 5:16.
Never stop praying, interceding and blessing your children. Here is one of my favorite prayers to pray over mine: Praying For Your Children From Head to Toe. It only takes a minute, but the rewards last a lifetime!
Sometimes you hear “a still small voice” waking you up. That morning, it came to me sounding like my Austin!
Prayer: Lord, show me how to pray for my children. Help me to pray with consistency, intensity, and with my whole heart. Lord, bless my children and help them to be dangerous for You in their generation! Amen