Praying for children (without ceasing)
Children’s ministry is a busy ministry that often needs lots of people to get involved for it to work well. People are needed to lead groups at church, teach SRE, help in after school clubs, prepare materials, and so on. It is a ministry that gives lots of opportunities for people to be involved in serving their community. But not everyone in a church is gifted, available or interested in getting involved in these ways.
However, prayer is an essential part of children’ ministry, and it is something that every Christian can do. When church members pray for children’s ministry they invite God into all our planning, programs and people. Praying also connects people with a ministry that they may otherwise have no involvement in. It helps them to understand the complexity, challenges and joys of children’s ministry. Sometimes, as people pray they become more interested in the ministry and choose to get more involved.
We can encourage members of our church to pray for the children’s ministry by giving them opportunities during the church service, in small groups, in families, and alone. Here are some suggestions for helping your church to pray for children’s ministry.
During your church service
• Pray for the children as they go out to their Sunday ministries.
• Ask the person who is leading the prayers to pray for the children’s ministry.
• Ask children to pray in church.
• Report back on prayers that have been answered.
• Introduce leaders for all of your children’s ministries and pray for them.
In small groups
• Set aside time in your Sunday children’s ministry for children to pray for one another and for reaching out to other children in the area.
• Display photos and artwork from children’s activities in the church so that people know what is going on.
• Include prayer points about children’s ministry in your newsletter.
• Create a monthly prayer diary for children’s ministry, where people are encouraged to pray for different aspects of the ministry each day. For example, they could pray for one of the following on each day of the week: leaders, children, Sunday ministry, after school ministry, SRE, families, children in the community who don’t attend any church activities. Prayer points could be tweeted or emailed each day to interested people.
• Set up a prayer group that meets regularly to pray for children’s ministry. This group could collect more specific prayer points from leaders and SRE teachers.
• Encourage families to include praying for children’s ministry in their family devotion or prayer times.
• Give families suggestions of different ways that they can pray together.
• Ask children to pray for one another at church and then share these prayers at home with their families.
• Send prayer points home with the children with other family devotional activities to do during the week.
In our prayers for all ministries may we ‘rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you’ (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18).