I have been exploring prayer for five weeks, and I have not yet looked at how we can pray for our families. Whether or not you have children or a spouse, you still have an extended family you can pray over. I grew up in a broken family and not just with my parents’ broken marriage; we were all broken from the effects of alcohol and abuse. I know first-hand the long term effects of that kind of brokenness, and it is only deliverance and healing from God that can bring wholeness. My point is that I had people in my life praying for me; praying that I would forgive and be whole, and I know that made a difference. We can and should do that for our own families! Job was a man who honored God and he prayed for his children; please look up Job 1:4-5 to see how he prayed for his children.
He had an interesting approach by taking the responsibility of sacrificing for them, which we obviously do not need to do today, but I want to look at the fact that he was acting as a mediator for them. Christ is our mediator today, but we can appeal to God for our families. I once read an interesting short story written by Philip Gully in his book Front Porch Tales: Warm-Hearted Stories of Family, Faith, Laughter and Love. In this story he recalled how a neighbor refused to water his newly planted tree so that its roots would grow deep. He wrote how years later when a terrible storm came through and knocked down most of the trees, that tree stood tall and strong because it had deep roots. He then wrote how we need to pray that our children’s roots would grow deep in God because life’s storms will come. We can pray that over our family, both immediate and extended. Looking back on my post from Week 5, Day 1 I saw how Paul’s prayer in Colossians 1:9-14 was a wonderful example of how to pray for others. We can continue praying for our unsaved family members that they would come to know Christ. I have begun praying more intentionally for my immediate and extended family because I feel that it truly is a responsibility given to us. I pray these over my family:
· For their faith to grow
· For their spiritual roots to grow deep in God
· That they would bear fruit in every good work
· That they would grow in the knowledge of the Lord
· Be strengthened with all power according to His glorious might
· Having great endurance and patience
· Able to joyfully give thanks to God
· That would understand and obey God’s will
· For their needs at that moment
Are you praying for your family?