A child's spiritual development begins with the parents' spiritual life.  What a child observes in parents, a child learns to believe.  Probably the most important thing you can do for your child's spiritual development is to pray for your child from the moment of birth.

Some things to pray for your child are:

* For health

* For a willing spirit to learn

* For a tender heart toward God and His Son, Jesus

* To come to know Christ as Savior at an early age

* To learn to be obedient and compassionate

* To be protected from the evil of the world while they are still vulnerable, and until they make their own choices

* For continued protection into their adult lives

* For their future relationships with friends

* For their future spouse

* That they would love God's Word and hunger to read the Bible

* That they would be intercessory prayer warriors

* That they would develop a love for giving

* That their character would reflect the fruits of the Spirit

* That they would seek to know God and yearn for wisdom, which will help them in decision-making

* For strength to maximize the gifts, talents, and strengths God has given them without becoming full of selfish pride

* For strength through the struggles that weaknesses bring, especially when a disability is part of their lives

* For their career, purpose, or call so that each child will be able to identify the appropriate choices for their lives and pursue accomplishing all that God has for them

The list could continue, but as children emerge into spoken language, allowing them opportunities to pray encourages heartfelt conversation with the living God.  For our children, prayer is as natural as talking to Mom and Dad.  It is precious to watch as we limit time to our prayer because we are in a hurry, our children often beg and plead to be included in prayer time and are unconcerned about our human preoccupation with time.  God loves our prayers and I pray for myself that I will learn from my children’s uninhibited prayers in gratefulness and enthusiasm to share with the Almighty God what is happening in our simple lives.

The second area to focus on in growing the spiritual walk of a child is to read God's Word to them from the very beginning.  We used Bible for Little Hearts and Promises for Little Hearts, which have cute pictures with one verse of directly quoted Scripture–many of the verses we know to song tunes.  Singing Scripture to your child embeds God's Word on their hearts before they can even talk!  It is truly amazing when children repeat Bible verses that is part of who they are!

These two “simple” steps help prime children’s heart toward faith.  God will lead them in their journey to know Him, but our sharing and modeling is a powerful witness to our children of God’s amazing grace!  It is our prayer for every child growing up in a Christian home, that they will come to know Christ as their Savior at an early age.  It is our prayer for children who haven't heard the good news of the Gospel, that God will raise up Children's Ministry workers who know how to lead a child to Christ and minister to the child's parents as well.  We also pray that the barriers in our culture that prevent sharing the gospel will be removed.

For further ideas in spiritual development, check the Bible and Character sections of Teaching and Project ideas.  These mini-articles are constantly being updated, so if you don’t see what you are looking for, e-mail, call, or write us and we can post ideas that are relevant to YOUR situation.  Also, check our catalog for resources to help you in parenting and home schooling your children.  God bless you in your endeavors to lead your children toward wisdom from God!


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