I was chatting with a friend the other day and she asked me about some ways I’ve been blessed and why I may have been blessed. It reminded me of something I’ve felt for a long time—that previous generations must have been praying for me. Not me, Amy, in particular, but rather the idea of me long before I was even born. Steve and I have had discussions about this before: this feeling that there is some sort of spiritual blessing or protection over our lives. I believe that he, too, had people praying for him.
Our lives are not remotely perfect, however, there have been many instances of inexplicable protection, provision, and spiritual growth. Of course the world might just call us lucky but faith will not let me accept such a basic answer as that. There is also the simple fact that living members of our family have specifically told us about their prayers!
Both Steve and I have people of faith in our family lines. Ministers, teachers, and faithful followers of Jesus who prayed for us. I’m not sure how far back Steve’s Christian lineage goes, but mine goes back as many generations as we know of. We had, and still have, previous generations praying for us. How awesome!
I know firsthand how important and powerful it is to have previous generations praying for future generations. And yet…I have not been able to get myself into any sort of habit of praying for the nameless future generations that will come from me. I have not even been able to get into a habit of praying for my children who are very much alive and have names!
I’ve been convicted of this for quite some time but haven’t known where to start! I pray all the time, but when it comes to praying over my kids I get stuck. It just seems so vague unless there is a specific request for the moment. Lord, please heal Elon’s cold…and…give him a good life? I mean, I guess that’s an okay prayer, but I think there is a lot more I should be getting into. What does a “good life” even entail?
When I take the time to think about it, I think my main problem is that I don’t take the time to think about it! I haven’t developed any spiritual muscles in this area, so it seems overwhelming. And since it’s overwhelming, I don’t know where to begin, and I have a million other tangible things to take care of, I don’t try. Can anyone relate?
Well it’s time for a change! Every year I pick a theme word for myself, and the word for 2020 is discipline. I am making a conscious effort to get into better habits that allow me to be a better disciple. But I know these habits will not just happen because I want them to. I’m not suddenly going to have the time or will-power to get up at 5 am and sit quietly for an hour praying for my kiddoes and their kiddoes. And even in the super-unlikely event that I suddenly have a dedicated time for generational prayer, I still need some sort of direction so I don’t spend the time thinking I should pray instead of actually praying.
I have a plan. It’s super simple and easy for me to remember. No matter what I’m doing, when the thought crosses my mind to pray, I automatically have some direction and no excuse. I’m hoping that the more I do this, the more I will think about doing it, and the easier it will become. I’ve assigned a different prayer topic to each day of the week, because that’s the kind of simplicity I realistically need.
- Sunday: Soul: their faith, relationship with God, spiritual walk, etc.
- Monday: Ministry: their impact in the world around them, the plans God has for them, etc.
- Tuesday: Temperament: their character development, emotions, etc.
- Wednesday: Wellness: their health, safety, and all things physical
- Thursday: THoughts: their mind, education, purity of thoughts, etc.
- Friday: Family & Friends: relationships with current family, blessings for their future family, friendships/the people who will be around them
- Saturday: Sin: their struggles with sin, family bondage, generational curses, etc.
These can be prayed for our current children and beyond. Even if we don’t have any children! Other people’s kids need prayers too! Below is some scriptural inspiration for each day’s topic. There are plenty more scriptures that can be used, but this is a jumping off point. And I desperately need a jumping off point! 😉
The scripture: John 15:5 (Jesus said) “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”
What you can pray: Pray that the child and future generations are branches of the true vine. Pray that they remain in Jesus and bear much fruit. Pray that the child and future generations acknowledge that apart from Jesus they can do nothing.
The scripture: Ephesians 2:10 “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
What you can pray: Pray that the child and future generations will be created in Christ Jesus to do good works. Thank God for preparing these things in advance for the current and future generations.
The scripture: Galatians 5:22-23 “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.”
What you can pray: Pray that the child and future generations will be filled with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Pray that they will be filled with the Holy Spirit so that these characteristics are prominent in their lives.
The scripture: 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”
What you can pray: Thank God for the physical bodies of the child and future generations. Ask Him to help the child and future generations honor God with their bodies and treat them as temples of the Holy Spirit.
The scripture: 2 Corinthians 10:5 “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”
What you can pray: Ask God to help the child and future generations to be able to demolish anything that sets itself up against the knowledge of God. Pray that He shows them how to take captive every thought so that their minds are full of obedience to Christ.
FRIDAY: FAMILY & FRIENDS
The scripture: Ephesians 4:2-3 “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. 3 Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.”
What you can pray: Pray that God shows the child and future generations how to be unified with the help of the Spirit through the bond of peace. Ask that He guides them to be completely humble and gentle, patient, and treating each other with love.
The scripture: Psalm 91:3-4 “Surely he will save you from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.” (actually the entire chapter of Psalm 91 would be great to pray over the kids—but for the sake of brevity I only have 2 verses here)
What you can pray: Pray that God saves the child and future generations from Satan’s snares and tricks. Pray that He covers them with His feathers so that in Him they will find refuge. Pray that God’s faithfulness will be their shield to protect them from the Enemy.
It’s so amazing to realize that since God is not restricted to time and space like we are, He is already with those people who are not yet conceived on this earth. He knows their names, their purposes, and He can accept prayers on their behalf. We should strive to leave a spiritual inheritance for those that come after us.
Proverbs 13:22a “A good person leaves an inheritance for their children’s children”
I’m praying that this helps get me into a habit of praying for future generations. Let me know if you’d like me to work on putting more prayer ideas together for each day’s theme!