Category Archives: Prayer

Teaching Children How to Pray

Little boy prayingThe Bible has a lot to say about prayer. It not only teaches us what to pray but how to pray. How we pray is often more important than what we pray, so it’s vital that we teach children these principles.

Pray all the Time: Scripture has a lot to say about when we should pray. God wants us to pray all the time. That doesn’t mean we’ll spend 24 hours a day on our knees, but it does mean we’ll be ready to pray at a moment’s notice whenever a need arises.

1 Thessalonians 5:17-18(ICB)  Never stop praying. Give thanks whatever happens. That is what God wants for you in Christ Jesus.

James 5:13-16(ICB)  If one of you is having troubles, he should pray. If one of you is happy, he should sing praises.  If one of you is sick, he should call the church’s elders. The elders should pour oil on him in the name of the Lord and pray for him.  And the prayer that is said with faith will make the sick person well. The Lord will heal him. And if he has sinned, God will forgive him.  Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other. Do this so that God can heal you. When a good man prays, great things happen.

WishingPray With the Right Attitude: Attitude is important to God. Jesus even taught about the right attitude and the wrong attitude when you are praying.

Matthew 6:5-8(ICB) When you pray, don’t be like the hypocrites. They love to stand in the synagogues and on the street corners and pray loudly. They want people to see them pray. I tell you the truth. They already have their full reward. When you pray, you should go into your room and close the door. Then pray to your Father who cannot be seen. Your Father can see what is done in secret, and he will reward you. And when you pray, don’t be like those people who don’t know God. They continue saying things that mean nothing. They think that God will hear them because of the many things they say. Don’t be like them. Your Father knows the things you need before you ask him.

Be persistent: When we pray, God doesn’t want us to give up until we get an answer from him.

Luke 11:5-19 (ICB) Then Jesus said to them, “Suppose one of you went to your friend’s house at midnight and said to him, ‘A friend of mine has come into town to visit me. But I have nothing for him to eat. Please loan me three loaves of bread.’ Then Jesus said to them, “Suppose one of you went to your friend’s house at midnight and said to him, ‘A friend of mine has come into town to visit me. But I have nothing for him to eat. Please loan me three loaves of bread.’ Your friend inside the house answers, ‘Don’t bother me! The door is already locked. My children and I are in bed. I cannot get up and give you the bread now.’ I tell you, maybe friendship is not enough to make him get up to give you the bread. But he will surely get up to give you what you need if you continue to ask. So I tell you, continue to ask, and God will give to you. Continue to search, and you will find. Continue to knock, and the door will open for you. Yes, if a person continues asking, he will receive. If he continues searching, he will find. And if he continues knocking, the door will open for him.

Luke 18:1-8(ICB) Then Jesus used this story to teach his followers that they should always pray and never lose hope. “Once there was a judge in a town. He did not care about God. He also did not care what people thought about him. In that same town there was a widow who kept coming to this judge. She said, ‘There is a man who is not being fair to me. Give me my rights!’ But the judge did not want to help the widow. After a long time, he thought to himself, ‘I don’t care about God. And I don’t care about what people think. But this widow is bothering me. I will see that she gets her rights, or she will bother me until I am worn out!’” The Lord said, “Listen to what the bad judge said. God’s people cry to him night and day. God will always give them what is right, and he will not be slow to answer them. I tell you, God will help his people quickly! But when the Son of Man comes again, will he find those on earth who believe in him?”

Cute african girlPray with humility: Scripture tells us that it is those who humble themselves before God who will be lifted up. With humility comes repentance.

Luke 18:10-14(ICB) “One day there was a Pharisee and a tax collector. Both went to the Temple to pray. The Pharisee stood alone, away from the tax collector. When the Pharisee prayed, he said, ‘God, I thank you that I am not as bad as other people. I am not like men who steal, cheat, or take part in adultery. I thank you that I am better than this tax collector. I give up eating twice a week, and I give one-tenth of everything I earn!’ “The tax collector stood at a distance. When he prayed, he would not even look up to heaven. He beat on his chest because he was so sad. He said, ‘God, have mercy on me. I am a sinner!’ I tell you, when this man went home, he was right with God. But the Pharisee was not right with God. Everyone who makes himself great will be made humble. But everyone who makes himself humble will be made great.”

Pray In Faith: The Bible talks a lot about faith. Without faith we can’t please God. But when we have a small amount of faith, even as little as a mustard seed, we can accomplish great things.

Matthew 21:21-22(ICB) Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth. If you have faith and do not doubt, you will be able to do what I did to this tree. And you will be able to do more. You will be able to say to this mountain, ‘Go, mountain, fall into the sea.’ And if you have faith, it will happen. If you believe, you will get anything you ask for in prayer.”

9 Prayer Verses for Children to Pray

Pray Green Computer Keys Showing Worship And Religion

Praying Scripture is powerful. One great way to teach children to pray more powerfully is to teach them verses they can pray. I suggest you give them a list to keep in their prayer journals. Make sure they know how to pray each verse as you teach them the verses. Here are a few verses to start.

Ephesians 5:20  (ICB) Always give thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Psalms 51:6 (ICB) Create in me a pure heart, God. Make my spirit right again.

Ephesians 1:17-20 (ICB)  I always pray to the God of our Lord Jesus Christ—to the glorious Father. I pray that he will give you a spirit that will make you wise in the knowledge of God—the knowledge that he has shown you. I pray that you will have greater understanding in your heart. Then you will know the hope that God has chosen to give us. I pray that you will know that the blessings God has promised his holy people are rich and glorious.  And you will know that God’s power is very great for us who believe. That power is the same as the great strength God used to raise Christ from death and put him at his right side in heaven.

John 15:5 (ICB) I am the vine, and you are the branches. If a person remains in me and I remain in him, then he produces much fruit. But without me he can do nothing. 

Jeremiah 29:11 (ICB) I say this because I know what I have planned for you,” says the Lord. “I have good plans for you. I don’t plan to hurt you. I plan to give you hope and a good future.

Philippians 4:13 (NKJV) I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

1 John 5:14-15 (ICB) We can come to God with no doubts. This means that when we ask God for things (and those things agree with what God wants for us), then God cares about what we say. God listens to us every time we ask him. So we know that he gives us the things that we ask from him.

1 John 14:14 (ICB) If you ask me for anything in my name, I will do it.

Proverbs 18:10 (ICB) The Lord is like a strong tower. Those who do what is right can run to him for safety.

6 Ways to Instill the Desire to Pray in Children

Child PrayingWe would all like the students in our ministries to have powerful prayer lives, but that won’t happen unless they have the desire to pray. Without that desire, children won’t have a great prayer life no matter how many times you teach on prayer.

Here’s some practical tips to help you equip children with a desire to pray:

Pray. If you don’t have an effective prayer life, you won’t be able to instill that desire in your students. If your prayer life is powerful, it will show when you pray in front of your students. That kind of prayer is contagious.

Have people testify about prayer. It’s not enough to tell children they should pray or that prayer is good for them. Have people in your congregation speak to your students about their prayer lives and what prayer has done for them. When children learn what prayer has done in adults’ lives they admire, they will have a desire to pray.

Keep a white board with children’s prayer requests. Every week, bring out the white board. As children make requests, write them on the board. When a request is answered, circle it. This way children understand that God answers their prayers.

Don’t discourage children from praying about “small things”. To them, these things are important. God wants us to come to Him with all our cares, even the small ones. When we imply to children that they can only come to God with requests you consider big enough, they won’t develop a relationship with God where they bring everything before Him. So go ahead and pray for the splinter in the finger or the dog that has fleas. It’s important to your students and to God.

Teach children the benefits of prayer. Here are a few scriptures that show some of the benefits of prayer:

Jesus wants them to come to Him.
Mark 10:13-14 People were bringing little children to Jesus. They wanted him to touch them. But the disciples told the people to stop. When Jesus saw this, he was angry. He said to his disciples, “Let the little children come to me. Don’t keep them away. God’s kingdom belongs to people like them.

The Holy Spirit will help them pray.
Romans 8:26 In the same way, the Holy Spirit helps us when we are weak. We don’t know what we should pray for. But the Spirit himself prays for us. He prays with groans too deep for words.


1 John 5:14-15 There is one thing we can be sure of when we come to God in prayer. If we ask anything in keeping with what he wants, he hears us. If we know that God hears what we ask for, we know that we have it.

God will give them peace when they’re worried.
Philippians 4:6-7 Don’t worry about anything. Instead, tell God about everything. Ask and pray. Give thanks to him. Then God’s peace will watch over your hearts and your minds because you belong to Christ Jesus. God’s peace can never be completely understood.

God wants them to pray all the time.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 Always be joyful. Never stop praying. 18 Give thanks no matter what happens. God wants you to thank him because you believe in Christ Jesus.

God wants them to pray for the sick.
James 5:13-15 Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praises. Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord; and the prayer offered in faith will restore the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up, and if he has committed sins, they will be forgiven him.

God will help them when they’re scared or in trouble.
Psalm 50:15 And call upon Me in the day of trouble; I shall rescue you, and you will honor Me.

Give your students prayer journals. You don’t have to spend very much to buy a colorful notebook to give to each of your students. Have a special Sunday where you teach them how to use their journals. You could also let them decorate the front of the journals.

Teach children to pray Scripture. Give them a list of Scriptures to place in their prayer journals to help them pray. The benefits of prayer above is a good place to start.

Once your students have the desire to pray, then they’re ready for you to teach them to become prayer warriors.

* All verse are in the New International Readers Version of the Bible

7 Steps to Spending Time With God

Priority Rubber Stamp Shows Urgent Rush DeliveryIf I had to chose the thing that would benefit a children’s minister most in ministry, it would be spending time with God. I’ve learned I can’t do anything that will have any lasting affect unless I put time with God as my number one priority. Here are seven steps you as a children’s pastor should do to be equipped to minister.

1. Pray regularly for students. Every week, schedule time to pray for your students. You might want to print out a list of students with prayer needs they have. Divide them up and pray for different students every day.

Pray Computer Keys Showing Worship And Religion2. Pray for church leaders. Your children’s ministry is a part of the church. Pray for the pastor and church leaders to have a vision from God and be in unity. This will help your children’s ministry in ways you can’t imagine.

3. Pray for the anointing as you come before your class each week. A great definition of anointing is the strength and ability to do what God directs you to do. I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength when I operate under His anointing.

4. Pray for a Word from the Lord every week. Bible stories and games are fine, but they mean nothing if the children’s lives are not changed. Every time you minister, you should have a word from God for those kids. Even if you use curriculum, God will use that curriculum and give you a way to communicate that lesson. Or He might have you teach something completely different. Pray that God lead you.

raising hands5. Rest in God’s presence until you have a vision and a clear direction for your class. If that direction is from God, it will correspond with the vision of the pastor and leaders.

6. Fast. Have a regular time each week to fast for your students. You might decide to only fast one meal, or a certain kind of food, or you might fast one day every week. Fasting will intensify your prayers and mobilize your ministry in a way that prayer alone won’t do.

7. Remember the Lid Principle. John Maxwell teaches us a principle called the lid principle. Basically any substance in a jar can’t rise any farther than the lid. The lid holds in down. In the same way, the level that your students grow spiritually will not exceed where you are spiritually. If you want your students to grow close to God, you need to grow close to God first.

National Day of Prayer for Children’s Ministry

National Day of Prayer is Thursday, May 7, 2015

Theme: Lord, Hear Our Cry

Verse: Lord, hear the cry and the prayer that your servant is praying in Your Presence this day. 1 Kings 8:28

It’s important to teach children to pray for their nation. There are a number of ways you can involve your students in the National Day of Prayer.

Teach a series on praying. Children who are taught how to pray are more likely to pray on their own. Gospel Light is offering a free downloadable prayer curriculum called Teach Us To Pray at this link.

Child PrayingHave a Special Prayer Service that night.  Include children in the prayer time or have a special prayer meeting just for children. Have a list of the things you can have the children pray for. Go through the list with the children. Here’s a prayer list with the 7 spheres of influence.

Religion:

  • Church
  • Pastor and Church leaders
  • God will send a Great Awakening
  • People all over America will be saved
  • People in other religions will learn the truth about Jesus
  • American missionaries in other lands
  • Peace of Israel (We are blessed when we pray for the peace of Israel.)

Families and Marriages:

  • Parents
  • Children
  • Marriages

Pray Computer Keys Showing Worship And ReligionEducation:

  • Schools
  • Teachers
  • Students

Business:

  • Stores
  • Poor People
  • Jobs for everyone who can work

Government and People in Authority:

  • President Obama
  • Supreme Court
  • Congress (List you senator and US representative)
  • Governor
  • State Officials
  • Mayor
  • City Officials
  • Police
  • Firefighters
  • Hospital and emergency workers

Media: Pray these media outlets honor God.

  • News
  • TV Shows
  • Internet
  • Social Networking

Arts and Entertainment: Pray these avenues of entertainment honor God.

  • Movies
  • Music
  • Art
  • Sports

Get the family involved in praying for our nation. Here’s a downloadable family guide for parents.

Family Prayer Guide

Here are some children’s prayer resources available on the web.:

Kids Prayer Website

Annie’s National Day of Prayer Page  

Every Home for Christ Kid’s World Prayer Map

Teach us to Pray Coloring Pages

Pray Club

National Children’s Prayer Conference

National Day Of Prayer Official Site

Here are some articles from Revival Fire for Kids about prayer:

Equipping Children with the Desire to Pray

Giving Children Opportunities to Pray

Teaching Children to Pray Using a Model