Honoring parents means more than sending cards on special days. And it’s more than an occasional invitation to dinner.
In the biblical context (Exodus 20:12; Ephesians 6:2), it includes respect and a commitment of grown children to care for their parents, especially when they are infirmed. It is one beautiful outworking of the Gospel. God cares for us, His children, and He models what ongoing, compassionate ministry looks like.
One of the greatest privileges of my adult life has been to pray for my elderly mom. Although we are separated by many miles and the burden of physical caring for her falls mostly on my precious sister, I do what I can and I love to pray for Mom.
Here are some of the things I’ve found useful to pray over the years. Perhaps they will be a template for prayers for your parent.
I pray for your continuing PROVIDENCE in my parent’s life.
I am grateful my parent trusted in You long ago, but I know there are many parents and elderly loved ones who still do not know you, Lord, and I ask you to woo them to Yourself and bring about their salvation and transformation (Ephesians 2:8-9; 2 Timothy 1:9; 2 Peter 3:9).
I pray You will bring to my loved one’s remembrance all the ways You have been their hope and help—in many cases since childhood (Psalm 62:5; 71:5; 121:2).
I thank you for all the ways You used my parent to shape my young life. What a precious gift! My parent guided me in practical ways and showed me how to trust You. Although my parent was not perfect, I sensed the desire to mold me into a good person, and I’m thankful I was encouraged to become a Christ-follower.
And now the roles are reversed. I have the privilege to help and serve, and remind my loved one of Your tender, shepherding care. Give me patience, wisdom and an understanding heart. Help me continue to show respect and appreciation, and to value who You, in Your Providence, created my loved one to be (Exodus 20:12)
Ultimately, I know Your care for my parent is beyond anything I can offer, for every good gift comes from You (James 1:17).
I pray for PROTECTION.
I pray my parent will keep on leaning on You, the Rock of strength and righteousness (Psalm 71:3a; 73:26; 92:12-15). Spread your protection over my parent, because You are the ultimate Refuge (Psalm 5:11; 46:1).
I ask you to protect my parent from the evil one, and show the way out in moments of temptation (2 Thessalonians 3:3; 1 Corinthians 10:13). May wisdom, discretion and understanding protect and guide every day (Proverbs 4:6; 2:11; 138:7).
I pray my parent will be courageous, confident in Your presence, help and deliverance (Psalm 121:1-8; Deuteronomy 31:6; Isaiah 41:10; Psalm 34:19; Psalm 91).
I pray for PROVISION—that you will meet my loved one’s needs.
Show me how to meet my parent’s needs in ways that will please You, Lord. Equip me to be a good steward in my loved one’s care (1 Timothy 4:5; 5:1-2).
There is much I can do, but You are the Great Provider. Thank you for your willingness to supply my parent’s needs for Your glory and my loved one’s joy (Romans 8:32; Matthew 6:31-32; 7:11; Philippians 4:19; John 14:13-14; 16:23-24). I pray my parent will be made holy through Your grace and receive Your good favor (1 Thessalonians 5:23-24; Psalm 84:11)
I pray for POWER, your strength in my parent’s weakness.
As strength declines, I pray for a greater sense of Your presence and power (Psalm 71:9, 18a). You are mighty, Father, and our strength is in You alone (Ephesians 6:10).
In times of need, help my parent lean on your sufficiency and everlasting arms (2 Corinthians 9:8; Deuteronomy 33:27); and when life feels so impossible, remind my loved one that nothing is impossible with You (Matthew 19:26).
I pray for PEACE in my parent’s aging years.
I ask You to give my parent a trusting and thankful heart, especially as days grow more difficult (1 Thessalonians 5:18). Help my aging parent take every disappointment to You. Preserve from any bitterness or spirit of discontent (Psalm 25:21).
I pray the Holy Spirit will teach and comfort, guide and calm (John 16:13; 2 Corinthians 1:4), and that my parent will not become discouraged in aging.
I pray for continuing PURPOSE.
I ask you to help my parent flourish—“like the palm tree… bearing fruit in their old age”—with an eternal perspective (Psalm 92:12-15). Work in my loved one’s life for Your glory (2 Corinthians 4:16). Open appropriate opportunities for ministry and influence.
Help my parent live as a holy and faithful role model, Father, for as long as you allow (Titus 2:2-5). I pray my parent, from a wealth of experience, will share important life lessons You still want me to learn.
Fill my parent’s mouth with Your praise, and a desire to worship and bring You glory from a testimony strong and true (Psalm 71:8).
Thank you for the many ways parents can influence children and grandchildren for good. I pray my loved one will, by word and deed, proclaim Your power and care to this generation (Psalm 71:18b).
Father, I thank you for Jesus, who makes possible our God-honoring transition from this world to everlasting glory. As I pray these things for my parent, I pray them for myself as well. I pray we all will someday hear Your “well done.” Amen!
Dawn Wilson and her husband Bob live in Southern California. They have two married sons and three granddaughters. Dawn assists author and radio host Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth with research and works with various departments at Revive Our Hearts. She is the founder and director of Heart Choices Today, and also publishes LOL with God and Upgrade with Dawn and writes for Crosswalk.com. Dawn also travels with her husband in ministry with the International School Project.
Photo courtesy: Thinkstockphotos.com
Publication date: January 23, 2017
This article is part of our larger Prayers resource meant to inspire and encourage your prayer life when you face uncertain times. Visit our most popular prayers if you are wondering how to pray or what to pray. Remember, the Holy Spirit intercedes for us and God knows your heart even if you can’t find the words to pray.
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by Diana (Miami)
hey my name is Diana. I am 12 years old. I am writing this because my parents just got divorced, my mom, little brother, and me are going through rough times now since my dad has left. plus, my dad doesn’t give money to buy what is needed for us and the house, the only thing he cares about is his drugs and his girlfriend.
We are going to lose the house pretty soon and he doesn’t care. I will like if you can pray for my dad can get better and for my mom to have faith in god because she sometimes feels like killing herself because of the things she has had to go through with my dad.
Return to Prayers for Strength and Guidance
Parents are to pray for their children’s spiritual as well as physical health and well-being. Parents are to ask God to help guide their children in all that they say and do. Parental prayer should be a daily reminder to parents that God has entrusted them with the rearing and training of their children. Parental prayer is an integral part of the loving relationship parents have for their children.
Praying for your children is not a privilege that we have as parents it is a necessity. Our children live in a tough world. Each day our children are subjected to literally thousands of offensive images and words. Our children also face an enormous amount of peer pressure to become part of what is considered normal by the world’s standards. Without prayer our children will not be able to stand against the insurmountable odds they will face from childhood until they leave this world.
There are several other reasons we as parents need to pray for our children;
- No one else knows our children as well as we do so no one else can pray for our children like we can.
- No one else but you may be praying for you children, so if you do not pray who will?
- It will increase your awareness of what your children are doing.
- It will help you talk to them about the what God desires for them to have as His children
- It will give them comfort to know that they are loved and cared for by you their parents.
Parents prayer – An example Lord you have given me these children to watch over and care for. Grant them your safety and your protection against all the schemes and temptations of the devil. Grant them the wisdom to get through life. Grant them the security of knowing that they rest firmly in your grasp. Thank you for giving me these children. All these things I pray in your name Amen.
Unfortunately, there are hungry and homeless children in the world that don’t benefit from the prayers of their parents. In fact, they need very basic spiritual and financial support. If you feel called to support a child, please consider our friends at Compassion International.
WHAT DO YOU THINK?
– We have all
and deserve God’s judgment.
, the Father, sent His only Son to satisfy that judgment for those who believe in Him.
, the creator and eternal Son of God, who lived a sinless life, loves us so much that He
for our sins, taking the punishment that we deserve, was
rose from the dead
according to the
. If you truly believe and trust this in your heart, receiving Jesus alone as your
, declaring, “
Jesus is Lord
,” you will be saved from
and spend eternity with God in heaven.
What is your response?
Yes, today I am deciding to follow JesusYes, I am already a follower of JesusI still have questions