Prayer: Age 6
TEACH YOUR CHILD TO TALK TO GOD
What is The Prayer Step?
One of the greatest things you can do to help your child develop a relationship with God is to teach them how to pray. This is why we’ve created the Prayer step on the Faith Path. Age six is a great time to explain to your child that prayer is how we communicate with and connect to our Heavenly Father.
Just as Jesus’ disciples asked, “Lord, teach us to pray” (Luke 11:1), you can nurture and strengthen your child’s faith by guiding them in the practices of praying individually and together as a family.
Put It Into Practice
As the primary faith trainer of your child, start today by implementing the following reminders:
- Remember the Impact – Praying with your child will strengthen your relationship with them, nurture strong faith within them, and reduce the level of tension in your home. As pastor and author Will Davis Jr. put it, “There’s something blessed about a child who the last thing they hear every night is the sound of their parents praying over them.” Start the routine in your home tonight.
- Be an Example – Allow your child to see and hear you pray on a regular basis. Take time to stop and give thanks in times when God blesses you or answers a prayer. Model prayer in times of difficulty or when seeking wisdom for important decisions. Pray for those in your family or those you know who are in need.
- Use Jump-Start Prayers
- Take turns allowing each person who is comfortable doing so to pray a very short, one-sentence prayer. It can be as simple as “Please heal Uncle Paul,” “Thank you for giving Troy a new friend,” or “I’m sorry for losing my temper with everyone earlier today.”
- Use fill-in-the-blank language to guide and focus prayer times, such as the following starter lines:
- “God, I love you because…”
- “Thank you, God, for…”
- “God, please help…”
- “God, I’m sorry for…”
Making prayer a regular part of your family culture will help make it a normal part of your child’s life. Consider incorporating some of the following into your family routine:
- Mealtime: Briefly give thanks before you eat, then wait until everyone has finished to have a longer time of prayer together.
- Bedtime: The first person in the family to go to bed (usually the youngest) alerts everyone else that it is time for an end-of-day prayer together.
- Drive time: As you start the engine, pause for a brief prayer together, asking God to go with you and invite everyone to pray a sentence prayer for any concern about the upcoming activities of the day. This is a great routine to begin as you drive to school in the morning.
- Walks: Taking a walk together is the ideal time to pray. You can also pause at the end to pray about the matters discussed during your walk.
A few final prayer tools and ideas might include…
- Prayer Board: Keep a dry-erase board in a high-traffic area of your home and use it to note items the family is praying for together.
- Prayer Journal: Consider purchasing a journal for your child to start recording prayers and how God answers them.
- Mirror prayers: Using a dry-erase marker, write a list of prayer concerns on your child’s bathroom mirror so he or she remembers to pause and pray after brushing teeth.
- Creative Family Prayer Times by Mike and Amy Nappa
- Pray Big for Your Child by Will Davis Jr.
- What Happens When I Talk to God? The Power of Prayer for Boys and Girls by Stormie Omartian