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Genipher March 6th, 2013 04:58 PM

Praying with children
We usually have a family Bible reading/study every night before bed. We've been doing this since the kids were little (oldest is now 8). However, they've always struggled with praying out loud with us. In a way I can understand...I have NEVER been good at praying out loud with others. But I want them to be comfortable with it. Besides that, they don't seem to pray at any other time and I want them to have a good relationship with Christ.

Anyway, I hate to "force" them into praying...but I'm not sure what else to do. Does anybody have any hints or tips or advice on how to encourage children to talk to God??

left_field March 6th, 2013 05:42 PM

Re: Praying with children
Boy I don't really have any suggestions except maybe to tell them that they can talk to God just as if they were talking to anyone else...just say what's on your heart...

My DH has problems praying out loud even saying grace, and even with me! I told him when we finally have a baby I want us to start very early to pray with the child and have that time so that he can grown comfortable praying in front of the kid, thus making the kid feel more comfortable....

But you're saying that's what you've been doing an the kids still aren't but you know what, it may take time. You just keep doing what you're doing and being a great example to them. That's most important! They'll always remember mom and dad as praying parents.

Countrymom4 March 7th, 2013 09:12 PM

Re: Praying with children
We pray out load at meals, so the children hear us praying. Now they all pray, and usually fight over who gets to...all except Teagan. Usually we have to poke her a bit to get her too.

momie2b9-20-11 March 8th, 2013 01:09 PM

Re: Praying with children
We started around when Kynslee was 10-11 months old saying prayer with her different time through the day. Now, She'll put her head down on us when we say pray and at the end she says Amen.

I agree - just keep trying to be a good example and just encourage them to talk to God and that God enjoys hearing from them. Good luck!

Buggymom March 9th, 2013 05:52 AM

Re: Praying with children
Sounds like your doing a good job with your kids! For me, I will randomly let Kayley know when would be good times for praying as the day goes on. Anytime I randomly feel like doing it I will ask her to join me and she prays with me. I agree about praying out loud being difficult. When I do it I usually whisper. In a large group I wouldn't be comfortable leading the prayer myself.

I was so proud of her when she told me she prays to herself at school (public school at that) for God to help her make good choices. :)

Genipher March 11th, 2013 12:18 PM

Re: Praying with children
We often pray at meals. In fact, sometimes I forget and then our 6-yr-old son says, "Wait a minute! We forgot something!" and promptly gives a thank-you.
But on everyday things...praying for others, or praying when they're sick, or even praying for something they want...they just don't seem to want to do it.
In fact, it's gotten to the point that when we press them (mostly the boys), they just give the same rote prayer.

A thought I had was to reward them with "points" when they pray meaningfully . And after a certain amount of points they'd get a prize (we already give points for extra chores and whatnot). But I'm not sure that praying should be rewarded like that. It should be something they WANT to do, right??

left_field March 12th, 2013 09:29 PM

Re: Praying with children
I agree they should want to do it and not get rewarded. Maybe in every situation that is an obvious blessing if you point it out and say 'oh thank God for this because without it x, y, z ' and then say we should give thanks. Maybe they will really realize oh that was a blessing and if God hadn't given this to us then we wouldn't be able to go here or do this or have this pleasure... it may be a way to help them feel thankful.

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