Today’s children live busy lives involving school, homework, sports team practices, music and dance lessons, church activities, iPod games, and television. They need to learn how to take time to “be still and know that He is God” (Ps 46:10a).
Making prayer a priority in your classroom is crucial because prayer habits which last a lifetime are formed in childhood. The more children pray, the easier it is for them to pray and the more they will learn about prayer. Prayer is the one thing a child can do that will have great impact on the extending of God’s kingdom, no matter what other skills and talents he may have.
Children need to know at least three things about prayer:
1. Prayer is talking to God in an ordinary manner from the depth of your heart. You can tell God exactly how you feel. You can ask Him your questions; share troubles and concerns; tell Him you’re angry, happy, sad. Prayer about feelings helps children develop a conversational relationship with God and they will come to know what it means to walk with Him and talk with Him on a daily basis. Nothing is too small for prayer. Prayer is not just for the big moments of life. God is in every detail and every minutes.
2. God is always listening. The only comment which needs to be made after a child prays is: “God listens when we pray.” Pointing out answers to prayer helps to affirm God listens.
3. You can pray anytime, anywhere. Prayers don’t need to be postponed until the next trip to church. You don’t even have to wait until you say your prayers before going to sleep at night. You can pray as the need occurs.