I was thinking about my journey with God through Moms in Prayer over the last nine years. I have one child, a daughter, and looking back I realized something.
I remember in elementary school when my prayers were focused on her getting the right teacher, asking God to help her get along well with other kids and that she would respect me and my husband and her teachers.
In middle school, my prayers focused on helping her to not feel left out since it was tough finding good friends, all the things that go along with puberty and the drama of teenage girls, and that she would do well in sports.
In high school, grades, grades, grades! ACT tests, college applications, purity, and yes, more girl drama.
Today she’s a college student and when I look back through all the years of prayer and I see her walk with God now, I realized that if I could have prayed just one thing for her throughout elementary, middle and high school, it would be to know God and love Him, period. It’s not that I didn’t pray these things. I did. But I realized that sometimes I focused way too much on the things in between that in the end, matter, but not near as much now that she’s a grown young woman.
Just like Solomon said in Ecclesiastes 12:13, “After all this, there is only one thing to say: Have reverence for God, and obey his commands, because this is all that we were created for.” (GNT)
If I could go back, I would’ve prayed more for her relationship with God than if she should get braces, her feeling included, test scores, etc. Because in the end, all that matters is that she loves God with all her heart, soul, mind and strength and loves others as herself. In the end, if these things are present in her life, all other issues will fall into place.
“Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?” He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the greatest and first commandment. And a second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.” Matthew 22:36-40 (NRSV)
I’m truly blessed that by the grace of God I did pray for her to know God better, to grow in Him, to love Him more… among all the other little things. Those little things are important too, but my perspective is so different now. She is a godly young woman because God is faithful to answer prayer! My Moms in Prayer groups have truly been a lifeline for me when she was so stubborn I couldn’t get through to her. (Yes, for several years she was in rebellion to God and to me and my husband). When she cried coming home from school because she sat alone at lunchtime. When high school AP classes were overwhelming.
So, moms, I’m not saying to stop praying for which teacher your child will have, or friendships, or purity or college entrance, and everything in between. But I realized that praying more for God’s desires for your child’s life is truly the greatest prayer. And if God had me go back and start all over again in my Moms in Prayer groups, I would focus more on her relationship with Him than all the other things life throws at our young ones.
The great part about Moms in Prayer is that we dedicate time to pray scripturally, God’s will. We pray in one accord, subject by subject, addressing those things which concern us and our kids. And God knows our mama’s nurturing hearts which care about every little thing our kids go through.
Ultimately, what is God’s greatest desire for our kids? He wants them to have hearts like His. Hearts that love others, minds that think His thoughts, a will that is submitted to His and His purpose for their lives. This world is in desperate need of young disciples of Christ— loving Him and loving others.
But above all pursue his kingdom and righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Matthew 6:33 (NET)
During the summer months, you can pray for your child through Mom’s Little Book of Powerful Prayers. Using the Four Steps of Prayer, these powerful prayers give a mom who feels overwhelmed, frustrated, or alone the opportunity to talk about these concerns with her heavenly Father. As you cry out to God on behalf of your children, you will gain hope when you feel hopeless, peace when you are fearful, and wisdom when you don’t know what to do.
Sue Iacoboni grew up in Colorado and now lives in Southern California with her husband of 21 years and their teenage daughter. She is a member of a college Moms in Prayer group and leads the prayer ministry at her church. Growing up in a cult and broken home, and being saved through the power of Jesus Christ many years later, God has placed a burden on her heart to pray for our youth. She firmly believes in the importance of prayer and the power of God’s Word to transform a young life.