Tag Archives: praying for our children

13. Campaign of prayer: Media advocates

Satan has launched an aggressive media campaign against our children. We are media advocates agreeing in prayer: powerful and effective, right with God.

“The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.” (James 5:16).

Satan’s Campaign

Satan has launched an aggressive campaign against our children. He attacks them relentlessly through our media system, our political system, our school system, and sometimes even our family system. Our kids are bombarded with his lies and propaganda almost constantly.

We cannot imagine the temptation and pressure to yield that our children endure daily. How will they escape Satan’s snare? Christian workers in the media, political arena, schools and families face almost insurmountable odds.

Our Campaign

But God is still able. He has called us to prayer. His way is not the flashy, clamoring method of the world. It is the “powerful and effective” prayer of one right with God.

Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.

“I tell you the truth, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven” (James 5:16, Matthew 18:19-20).

As we come into the presence of our God and present our children to him in prayer, God hears, and he promises to respond. The Bible teaches that our prayers have the power to bind Satan’s attack against our children.

God instructs us to pray one for another, and to agree in prayer. God makes special promises to respond to the united power we manifest as we blend our hearts in prayer.

Many mothers have led heroic campaigns for their handicapped children, their missing children, or in honor of their deceased children. But to combat Satan’s campaign against our children, our campaign must be a campaign of prayer.

If our children are wayward, this is especially important, because if they are not “meshing” with other Christians, they can easily be forgotten by the Christian community. We are prone to remember and pray for those people whose need is brought to our attention.

As mothers, we must be a “prayer advocate” for our children. We must keep the passion burning in the hearts of other Christians for the needs of our children, especially our wayward children. We cannot allow them to be forgotten.

Challenged Campaign

We’ve seen that whenever a parent came to Jesus in the Bible, sincerely seeking help for their child, God met the child’s need. However, those parents had to place their faith in God, and to be in right relationship with him. The Bible says:

If I had cherished sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened.

When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.

Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God and receive from him anything we ask, because we obey his ommands and do what pleases him.

–Psalm 66:18, James 4:3, 1 John 3:21-22.

What does it mean to “had cherished sin in my heart?” It is to know there are certain areas in my life where I am not going in the way God would have me go, and to be unwilling to allow God to help me change these areas.

Satan challenges our commitment. God’s promises are only for those who give him control. When we defend certain territory in our lives, we find that those areas we defend do not provide the fulfillment we seek. When we are willing to trust God with control in every area, even those areas we cherish, we will find what we really want.

We cannot even know what we want on our own. God cannot work things out for best for us as long as we take control and work them out our way.

A good illustration of this is the prayer of this mother for her sons:

Then the mother of Zebedee’s sons came to Jesus with her sons and, kneeling down, asked a favor of him.

“What is it you want?” he asked.

She said, “Grant that one of these two sons of mine may sit at your right and the other at your left in your kingdom.”

“You don’t know what you are asking,” Jesus said to them. “Can you drink the cup I am going to drink?”

“We can,” they answered.

Jesus said to them, “You will indeed drink from my cup, but to sit at my right or left is not for me to grant. These places belong to those for whom they have been prepared by my Father.”

When the ten heard about this, they were indignant with the two brothers. Jesus called them together and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave– just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

–Matthew 20:20-28

This mother and her sons came worshiping Jesus. So what was wrong? She was not in right relationship with God. She sought her will for her sons, not God’s will, and this is sin.

She was not acting in faith either. She was attempting to deceive Christ into making a commitment off guard so that when he announced his kingdom it would be too late to renege. She did not understand that the kingdom is heavenly and that it is ruled by love.

We must be in right relationship to God if we would get our prayers answered. If we are not walking in the way God would have us go, our prayers are simply words. Our first prayer must be for God to cleanse us.

We must come as Hannah did when she said, in essence, “I accept whatever God brings forth with my child” (See Session 4). God’s goal for our children is that they live for him. He has instilled that same goal in us as Christian parents. As our prayers blend with God’s will for our children, we can know God will do what is right for them.

This leads us to the second requirement for answered prayer. We must come in faith. Satan will challenge us here too. We must stand firm. We must believe that God will do what he says.

Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.

This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us–whatever we ask–we know that we have what we asked of him.

–Mark 11:24, 1 John 5:14-15.

Victorious Campaign

We can “know that we have what we asked of him.” God may not do what he has promised in the way we think he should. He may not do it at the time we think he should. But these things are sure: God will do it as we wait on him. He will do it in a manner which far exceeds our plans or imaginations. He will do it at the most appropriate time. And when he does it, we will marvel at the perfect wisdom of his way and his time.

Application

God is always faithful to answer. But we are not always faithful to pray. God, forgive us.

We renew our commitment to fight for our children in prayer. Strengthen us for the battle. We will not let our children go. We will bind the power of Satan through prayer as long as there is breath in us. We will fight for our children, and we will win. For our God is able!

Thought to Remember

Satan is playing tug-of-war with our children, but with him it is not a game. It is a demonic attack. Our part is to pray. God’s part is to answer. Satan attacks this plan, not on God’s side but on ours. He knows the only way to thwart God’s answer is to halt our prayers.

Questions for Discussion

  1. What important campaign should we lead for our wayward children?
  2. Why involve others in prayer for our children?
  3. What are the two conditions we must meet for our prayers to be effective?
  4. Can something so easy really work?
  5. Can something so difficult be worth the effort?

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Scripture taken from New International Version unless otherwise noted

12. Unleashing God’s power: Catalyst of prayer

The religious ruler, common man, nobleman–all unleashed God’s power through prayer. Parenthood is an overwhelming project. We must communicate with the author of the plan.

“Don’t be afraid; just believe” (Mark 5:36, Luke 8:50).

The Daughter of the Religious Ruler

Jarius was a ruler of the synagogue. But religion wasn’t enough to bring his daughter back from death. However, Jarius went to the one who could make his daughter whole again. Jesus told him “Don’t be afraid; just believe.” Read Jarius’ story here:

Then one of the synagogue rulers, named Jairus, came there. Seeing Jesus, he fell at his feet and pleaded earnestly with him, “My little daughter is dying. Please come and put your hands on her so that she will be healed and live.” So Jesus went with him. A large crowd followed and pressed around him.

While Jesus was still speaking, some men came from the house of Jairus, the synagogue ruler. “Your daughter is dead,” they said. “Why bother the teacher any more?”

Ignoring what they said, Jesus told the synagogue ruler, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.”

He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha koum!” (which means, “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”). Immediately the girl stood up and walked around (she was twelve years old). At this they were completely astonished.

–Mark 5:22-24,35-36,41-42

The Son of the Ordinary Man

This man in this story was a common guy who blended in with the crowd, but his son had a problem. This parent took it to Jesus. He may have been just one of a huge multitude to everyone else, but he and his son were important to Jesus. Jesus told him, “Everything is possible for him who believes.” Here’s his story:

A man in the crowd answered, “Teacher, I brought you my son, who is possessed by a spirit that has robbed him of speech. Whenever it seizes him, it throws him to the ground. He foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth and becomes rigid. I asked your disciples to drive out the spirit, but they could not.

“It has often thrown him into fire or water to kill him. But if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.”

“`If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for him who believes.”

Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”

When Jesus saw that a crowd was running to the scene, he rebuked the evil spirit. “You deaf and mute spirit,” he said, “I command you, come out of him and never enter him again.”

The spirit shrieked, convulsed him violently and came out. The boy looked so much like a corpse that many said, “He’s dead.” But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him to his feet, and he stood up.

After Jesus had gone indoors, his disciples asked him privately, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?”

He replied, “This kind can come out only by prayer.”

–Mark 9:17-18,22-29

The Child of the Nobleman

The nobleman’s power and affluence could not save his son from death. But the nobleman went to the right place. Jesus told him, “You may go. Your son will live.” Read it here:

Once more he visited Cana in Galilee, where he had turned the water into wine. And there was a certain royal official whose son lay sick at Capernaum. When this man heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea, he went to him and begged him to come and heal his son, who was close to death.

“Unless you people see miraculous signs and wonders,” Jesus told him, “you will never believe.”

The royal official said, “Sir, come down before my child dies.”

Jesus replied, “You may go. Your son will live.”

The man took Jesus at his word and departed. While he was still on the way, his servants met him with the news that his boy was living. When he inquired as to the time when his son got better, they said to him, “The fever left him yesterday at the seventh hour.”

Then the father realized that this was the exact time at which Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live.” So he and all his household believed.

–John 4:46-53

Application

The religious ruler, the ordinary man, and the nobleman–all went to the one who could meet their children’s needs. We must go to the one who can meet our children’s needs as well. Parenthood is an overwhelming project. The only way we can accomplish the task successfully is to communicate with the one who wrote the plan!

We cannot know what kind of parents we need to be aside from prayer. We cannot know the God who can help us apart from prayer. We cannot experience the fulfillment of the promises of God unless we claim them through prayer. We cannot make it without prayer.

The most important thing we can do for our children is to pray for them. Prayer must be the first step and the last step. Prayer must be the backdrop of all the in-between steps. Only through prayer can we be equipped to be the mothers our children need. Prayer is the catalyst that unleashes God’s intervention and power in our children’s lives.

Let us go to him now in prayer for our children. He has the right answer for us!

Thought to Remember

Our children are living in a world that seeks to destroy them in its clutches of wickedness. Jesus never turned away a parent who came to him in sincerity. He always had an answer for them, and he has an answer for you.

Questions for Discussion

  1. What is the most important thing we can do for our children?
  2. What is the first step?
  3. What is the last step?
  4. What should we do in-between these steps?

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Scripture taken from New International Version unless otherwise noted