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I don’t think there is really a magic formula on how to teach a child to pray. I think they learn from example. When my daughter turned about 2-years-old we started actively including her in our daily prayers. Most of the times we would have her say “Amen” because that’s all she could say. As her speech improved, we started asking her to pray. Sometimes she was very shy, and I could tell she didn’t know exactly what to say. However, I would encourage her to say whatever came to her heart. Being a two-year-old she would say things like “thank you God for the spaghetti we ate for dinner” or “thank you God for letting us go to the library”. Each time I would build up her confidence by saying “what a awesome prayer Honey Bee”. After awhile I started noticing she became excited to say prayer and began asking to do it.
It was a wonderful feeling knowing that we were helping our little girl build a relationship with God. Now, she will stop and ask to say prayers in random places. One day we were in a parking lot and she said “mommy I want to say a prayer for daddy”. Of course I wanted to get inside the building first, but I didn’t want her to feel bad. So we stopped in the middle of the parking lot and she said her prayer. Once she was done I told her that was very thoughtful of her.
Here are a few tips on teaching your child how to pray.
- Make them feel included. Sometimes us adults dismiss children during prayer. We want to focus on saying the right words. However, show your child that you value what their prayers are by including them.
- Help them feel confident. Show them excitement when they pray. This sends the signal that they are doing a great job. It doesn’t matter if what they say doesn’t make sense, it makes sense to God.
- Teach them a few easy prayers. I wish I could take credit for this tip but I can’t. My husband taught our daughter a few simple prayers. These prayers are easy for her to recite.
I hope these tips are helpful to you and your family!
If you liked this article please check out my article on Teaching your Child to Pray.….http://www.homegrownadventures.net/2015/04/teaching-your-child-to-pray.html
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