At the Follow Youth Convention, I was talking to a long-time friend. We were comparing some of the differences between what it is like for our children to be in college compared to when we were in college. One of our conclusions was that even though we have much better communication access today, we probably verbally talk with our college kids about as much as our parents talked with us. It’s about ninety percent texting back-and-forth today. Back then, it was the Sunday afternoon phone calls to the one dial-up phone on the second floor of the dorm. Regardless, whether then or now, hearing each other’s voices on the other end of the phone is special.
Since 1994, I have communicated with God every morning regarding my children. When they were younger, I prayed for God’s blessing over their lives while placing my hand on their heads as they slept in their cribs. When they were in elementary school, I would enter their room before heading to the office and stretch my hand over them and ask for God to develop them like only he can. During their high school years, I would stand outside the bedroom door, raise my hand and ask God to protect them.
Even though my children are in college now, I still pray for them every morning. If I’m at home, the first thing I do is stand with my hand raised, face the north (where their university is located compared to my house) and ask the Lord to bless and use their lives for his kingdom. I realize some religious practices face a certain way to pray several times a day. After I pray, I send them a text message every morning assuring them of my prayers and love.
If you have biological or spiritual children, one of the unique privileges no one else has is to pray for them regularly. No one else can take your place in the same role you fulfill. You may not want to put your hand on their head when praying for them. Or you may not raise a hand in their direction first thing in the morning. How and when you choose to pray is completely up to you. Yet I admonish you to pray for your children daily. Ask for God’s blessing over their lives as often as you can. Today I will “face the north” and pray for mine.
Dr. Jim Dunn is executive director of Church Multiplication and Discipleship for The Wesleyan Church.