Linda Evans Shepherd
Recently, I was asked if there was anything more we as parents could do to protect our kids from the kind of senseless tragedies like drive by shootings or the evil that happened at Sandy Hook Elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut.
In times like this it’s good to remember that we do have a powerful weapon; we can pray! In fact, I’d like to share a couple of ideas of how you can daily pray protection over your kids.
- Bless them! – I never sent my then young son to school before putting my hand on his head and giving him a blessing. This blessing prayer became so important to Jim that If I forgot to pray it, he’d grab my hand and place it on his head and say, “I can’t go to school until you bless me Mom!”
But even with all the blessings I prayed for Jim, his school life was not without challenges. However, not only did he get through each of these challenges, I found that the challenges made him stronger and helped him transform into the wonderful young man he is today. I thank God for getting him through and count my prayers as the guardrails he needed to help not only keep him safe, but help keep him on the right track.
Let me suggest you follow my example. So daily, before you send your child into the world, place your hand on his or her head and bless your child this with a prayer like the following:
I bless my child with your favor, love, and peace. I ask that you would shield and protect (name) from evil and danger. Let (name) know that your presence is with them and they are not alone.
In Jesus’s name,
2. Pray for them throughout the day – When your thoughts turn to your children during the course of your day, take that as a reminder to pray quick prayers like: ‘Dear Lord, be with little Annie. Give her courage on the playground today,’ ‘Help Jon with his spelling test,’ or ‘Be with Emily, right now, protect her and keep her safe.’
The good news is that sometimes, when God puts our children on our heart, it’s a call to pray for them. And, when God himself calls us to pray, you should know that he is already ready to answer our requests. However, if the call to pray for your child is heavy, do not hesitate to pray until you feel God’s peace.
The good news is that our God is bigger than evil, God is even bigger than a tragedy such as the death of a child. We know this because Jesus himself conquered both sin and death. Because of his victory, we know that the children who leave us too soon will always be safe in the eternal presence of God’s love and care.
But for now, we as parents are called to pray for our children as well as those left behind in the wake of the Sandy Hook and other senseless tragedies. It’s the one thing we can do that will truly make a difference.