Learn To Thank God As Part Of Prayer

ClipArt of Children Praying

Thanking God for everything every night and morning is the most important thing children can do. Daily recognition fortifies their relationship with Him. It is our divine obligation to teach our children to surrender their lives to God and recognize his grace in our lives. This practice not only fortifies our relationship but reminds us that our entire life rests on Gods grace and goodness. It is difficult to end the day or begin the day on a sour note when we have given praise to the Lord before we go to sleep and when we awake. Girl Praying at her bed

Lord, teach me to offer you a heart of thanksgiving and praise in all my daily experiences of life. Teach me to be joyful always, to pray continually and to give thanks in all my circumstances. I accept them as Your will for my life. (1 Thessalonians 5:18-19, (Thanksgiving Prayer – 7, Crosswalk.com)

Giving thanks also requires that we begin to see our normal daily activities through a different lens. It is important that we teach our children to see God’s glorious work in everything. This is also a reminder that we have to do the same. Often as adults, we lose the ability to see through the lens of God. It seems that the world gets in our way and we focus on the demands of the day instead of seeing God’s grace in our lives.girl praying by bed2

Every morning I ask my granddaughter what she is it going to thank God for this morning. At first, it was difficult for her, it is difficult for me as well. Early on, we were redundant in our thanks, always reflecting on the same things, but when we decided that we had to look outside of our normal world view, it gave us the opportunity to objectivity view the world differently. We began seeking new discoveries that all tied back to the wonderful life God has provided if we would just look with a new perspective.

As we become more familiar with His daily activity in their lives, we shifted our accepted point of view from a worldly one to a Godly one. This is part of the metamorphosis of becoming a Young Christian Warrior.


Yesterday my Granddaughter called me into the living room. She was showing me her shadow on the wall. The amazing part was that her shadow was upside down. It astounded us. Then we recognized that the sun was shining into the room, landed on a picture sitting on an end table and then projected across the room to the wall. The transference occurred when the sun rays came through the window, landed on a glass picture frame across the room,  and the light was then projected on to the wall. It was miraculous. It was a lesson of how awesome God is and a science lesson. She thanked God that evening before she went to bed.  Flipped reflect of a child in nature


Recently we were driving down the street, the sun and a few white clouds covered the sky. All of a sudden it began to rain. It was raining in the direction we were traveling, but not where we were coming from. This gave way to a discussion about Gods greatness. How He provides weather events to feed plant life, clean the air, and give new beginnings. The new beginnings gave way to a discussion about the rainbow that appeared shortly after the rain stopped. Rainbow after the rain

And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come: 13 I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. 14 Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds, 15 I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life. 16 Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth.”  (Gen. 9: 12-16)

Miracles happen throughout the day, large and small, significant and seemingly insignificant, it all depends upon perspective. Young Christian Warriors view the world out of a different lens than their peers.

For parents: Thanking God keeps everything He has done for you in your working memory. It will help you keep focus on all He has done rather than the challenges you may encounter. If our children learn during their youth to identify what God has accomplished in their lives, it will be easier to live their lives stress free. Join me in reading, Remembering All God Has Done: http://bible.com/r/2c, it will help you teach your children to identify the many gifts we take for granted as well as the times He helped us in times of need.


Prayer for Peace

Lord, make me an instrument of Thy peace;
where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
and where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood, as to understand;
to be loved, as to love;
for it is in giving that we receive,
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

St. Francis Assisi

Our children look to us for guidance and direction. We are their template for adulthood. We should all try to become a template for peace. When times are difficult, they should see the resilience of God present in all that we do and say.

The previous posts provide lessons to help our children become Young Christian Warriors. This post serves to strengthen us as God’s children. We live in a chaotic time. Our nation is going through a traumatic period, and the outcome will define who we are as a Nation. This poem speaks to the virtues we need to embrace to overcome. We are God’s people and should not be swayed by the violent rhetoric that decimates our ears. St. Francis of Assisi lived in the fifteen century. The words he penned are as valid today as five centuries ago.

This lesson is as much for us as it is for our children. We are their template.



How to Train Your Children to Embrace the Word of God

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.           Romans 12:2

family praying

Steps that empower our children to live a Christ-like life:

1. read the scripture to them
2. have them read or recite the scripture with you
3. explain the scripture to them
4. read the scripture at bedtime and share its meaning one more time
5. the next morning ask them about the scripture and to apply the scripture at school
6. when they come home from school discuss it with them and ask if they applied it during       the day, how and what was the outcome
7. pray that they receive the word and embrace it as a life practice

Over time the scripture will take root in their daily activities and they will become Young Christian Warriors.

Key – Never stop praying, 1 Thessalonians 5:17 NLT. Never stop teaching the scriptures to your children. Never stop questioning if they are applying the Word of God in their daily lives. Always ask them to share how they applied the word in a real-life situation.

Children – Fruit of the Spirit


22 But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self-control. Galatians 5:22,23



Paul, the author of the Book of Galatians, used the concept of fruit because it created a visual image of the characteristics (or virtues) of Christ. When teaching the Fruit of the Spirit, we always see a chart or pictures of fruit. Most people can recite the nine characteristics, known as the Fruit of the Spirit, but how many look at themselves to make sure these are their (personal) characteristics acquired through their relationship with Christ? Reinforcing the characteristics of Christ, in our children, is the basis for who they will become as adults.


LOVE (parent to child.)

Love is selfless, unconditional love. God loves us unconditionally, without thought, and we should love each other the same way. It is the way Jesus feels about us. This type of love is always giving and impossible to take or be taken. Agape love shows itself in action. (Focus on the Family, Agape Love.)

(Parent to child)  It is the way I feel about you when you behave or misbehave when you are sick or well. If you have a pet, use the pets’ relationship with your child. It is when Sam hides your ball, tears up your book, wets on the floor and when he retrieves the toy you threw, sits next to you, and sleeps on your bed. It is Sam being Sam and loving him for it.

JOY (parent to child)

Joy is a feeling of internal (inside) peace. It’s the warm feeling you get when you see Grandma, your new baby sister or, picked out your pet. It is how you feel the love God has for you and the love you have for God. It is a snuggly, warm feeling.

PEACE (parent to child)

Peace is the warm, snuggly feeling of joy and peace we feel in our hearts. Peace comes from the presence of God in our life. It lets you know God loves you by sending his only Son, to strengthen our relationship with Him. When you are using these characteristics (of Christ) in your decision-making, you will experience peace when you make your decision and will know God is with you.

PATIENCE (parent to child)

Patience is how we wait for something. For example, when you get a new pet, you have to be patient while you train him, he will not obey immediately, he has to be taught. When your little brother, sister, cousin, or neighbor is playing with you, and they do not treat your toys the way you want them to, you have to learn to wait without staying angry while they learn how to treat your toys. God wants us to learn to become patient with others, just as he is patient with us. Patience is being kind to others even when you don’t want to. Patience demonstrates how we trust God to answer our prayers while we grow to become more like Christ.

KINDNESS (parent to child)

Kindness is how we treat others, we are not rude, angry, or blaming. It is being generous. It is letting go of how a friend mistreated you and love them for who they are. It means we are concerned about others, such as when a friend gets hurt on the playground; you help them up, call an adult, and tell them everything will be okay.  Kindness helps us to become better-caring people.

GOODNESS (parent to child)

Goodness is more than kindness. Your friend got hurt, you were kind because you wanted to help him. The act of goodness is helping him. Many people want to help someone in need but do not follow through. Goodness is following through because you know that is what God wants you to do. It is having a good heart and acting on it. We saw goodness in people during Hurricane Harvey, Irma and Maria. Neighbors were helping each other to survive the storms. Why, because it was the right thing to do.

FAITHFULNESS (parent to child)

Faithfulness is being responsible. If I (mother) ask you to put your clothes in the hamper and you do it, it is being reliable. I can trust you to do what you say you will do. It is being able to be trusted, reliable. Being faithful is demonstrating how Christ feels about us, the is trustworthy and reliable. He is true to his word. Our goal is to become trustworthy and reliable like Christ.

GENTLENESS (parent to child)

Gentleness is not blaming a person for doing something wrong but instead helping them to do better. Gentleness does not show conceit, envy or rudeness. God’s love helps you to become gentle, caring, and kind.

SELF-CONTROL (parent to child)

Self-control is when you stop and think about what you are getting ready to do and decide not to do it because it is wrong and you know Your parent expects a better outcome. self-control is self-discipline. For example, athletes are self-disciplined, they know how they should behave and how to exercise to be their best. The Holy Spirit helps us to have self-control and to behave ourselves.


The nine characteristics of Christ are very powerful tools. Teaching our children and teens to rely on them is important. We cannot begin the process too early in life., though it is important to keep in mind your child’s developmental stage to ensure they understand the power our Lord has given us. It can be likened to Clark Kent growing up in Smallville, Kansas. Superman learned about and how to use his powers over time, learning to apply the characteristics of Christ in our lives is much the same. It is a process.

Please be patient with the process. This lesson may take a few weeks to teach the definitions to your children and months to reinforce what they have learned. You will reinforce the virtues by asking your children about how they use them. Questions and discussions reinforce what they have learned.

Good questions to ask your children each day during dinner to help reinforce the use of the Fruit of the Spirit in their daily activities:

  • How was your day?
  • What characteristics of Christ did you use today?
  • What did you do and what was the result?
  • Is there an instance when you did not use the Fruit of the Spirit, why not, what happened?

Helping Children Put On Their Armor Through Prayer

Putting on your children’s armor is a process.

When you begin the lesson, it will take time to thoroughly train your children in understanding how and what they are doing.

When my Granddaughter and I began praying the Whole Armor of God, I would repeat the prayer after me. I began teaching the prayer to my Granddaughter when she was five. She is turning nine and no longer needs my help.

I always asked her what I said, quizzing her to decide if she understood the power of the prayer over her life. I would explain that putting on the Armor is like getting dressed every morning. You put on one piece at a time.

Over time your children will grow in their understanding and the prayer may take 4-5 minutes unless the Holy Spirit inclines them, or you, to speak to what is occurring in their lives. Today my granddaughter leads the prayer. She explains what each piece of armor does and what she specifically wants to include in the prayer. For example, my granddaughter was being bullied at school by one of her classmates, so she included protecting her mind when praying about the Helmet and what it covers, she prayed – “I reject Janet’s mean words about me, they have no power over me.”

A recommendation, ask your children visualize putting on the armor as you pray out loud explaining how each part of the armor will protect them.

At the close of the day I always ask her how her day went and did the armor protect her today, she would tell me ‘yes’ or ‘no’ and if she visualized the part of her armor when the enemy came against her. If she did, she would tell me how it protected her and kept her at peace and, how she applied Jesus’ example in her actions. Often she will report whatever was causing her a problem stopped. We praise the Lord for the Armor.


Today Lord, we are putting on the Whole Armor of God.

The Helmet of Salvation covers my head, my mind, and my eyes.
My helmet is my invisible sensor, and it keeps evil out of my mind. It helps me focus on the Lords will and not on sin. It helps me to ward off and reject harmful words and actions directed at me by others. It protects me from evil. It deflects hurtful things people say to me.

The Breastplate of Righteousness protects my heart.
Righteousness is the quiet voice of the Holy Spirit; it is a gift from God, I cannot earn it. Righteousness is much like a filter that strains out unGodly and reinforces our wish, to be honest, trustworthy, kind, good-hearted, loving, and joyful. (Fruit of the Spirit – Galatians 5:22-23).

The Belt of Truth holds us together.
It keeps all the armor in place, like a belt holding up pants, blouse tucked in, secure in Jesus and the Word of God. It keeps our heart and mind focused on Christ.

The Sandals of the Gospel of Peace covers my feet.
Everywhere I walk I walk in and bring peace. My sandals, shoes or sneakers keep me from hurting my feet. The gospel of peace is the Word of God that we share with others as we walk in His Word. Without the Gospel of Peace, I am barefoot and cannot walk without fear.

The Shield of Faith protects me from the darts of the enemy.
It helps me when I do not understand. My faith is the thing God gave me to protect me from the things I cannot see.

The Sword of the Spirit is the Word of God. It gives me boldness to reject and attack misinformation. I use it to defend myself from things I know and don’t know are wrong. The sword cuts through everything the enemy can send my way. The sword is the way, the truth, and the light.

Father, thank you for my armor. I go out today able to protect myself from evil, by acknowledging the power and strength you gave me though sacrificing your son, Jesus, to give me life.

I hope you found this short series about how to teach your children to cover themselves begins to visibly change their sense of who they are as Young Christian Warriors.

Next Post: Recipe for Success – Teaching Children How to Embody the Fruit of the Spirit

Children – Armor Up

Praying with our children is the most important thing we can do every morning before leaving home. It instills a sense of purpose, peace, and hope by living the Word out in our daily lives. Over time this prayer will become part of your family’s morning practice, and as your children become young adults, they automatically ARMOR FIRST every morning.

My prayer with my Granddaughter goes like this: Dear Lord Jesus, thank you for waking us up for another day’s journey. Thank you for going before us and protecting. Today, we are putting on our armor to protect us throughout the day, to resist the enemy and help us to become more like You.

Next post: The Prayer, Putting On My Children’s Armor