Thursday, July 15, 2010

day 192: parents’ prayer from Psalm 12:1—“help, lord!”

’Help, Lord,’ will suit us living and dying, suffering or laboring, rejoicing or sorrowing. In Him our help is found, let us not be slack to cry to Him.” Charles Spurgeon

There is perhaps no other vocation in which it is harder to know what to pray or how to pray than that of parenting. I mean, after all, we are Moms and Dads who want sunshine, rainbows, hearts, and flowers for our kids all of their lives. And yet, we know that continual sunshine (were it even possible) is not the way to shape a life into what God wants for it to be.

So how do we pray? “Lord, please give my child whatever she wants and make her happy all the days of her life?” OR “Lord, please do whatever it takes to bring this child to you all the days of her life?” (Gasp…)

And those just sum up the “ongoing prayers.” What about in times of trial and great difficulty? The times in which we are so overcome with grief or worry that we cannot even form the words, even if we did know what to pray?

Those scenarios are why I believe that the Psalm 12:1 prayer that the psalmist prayed should aptly be termed the “Parents’ Prayer.” Yes, David was mourning in this psalm over the few faithful men he had; he felt weak; he felt alone. He felt hopelessness and despair. He was concerned about what would happen in their future. His situation was completely different than that of parenting. And yet, it was completely similar as well.

“Help, Lord” is the appropriate prayer for us as parents. For the times in which we feel weak, times that we feel alone. Times in which we feel hopelessness and despair. And yes, times in which we are more than a little concerned about what will happen in our kids’ futures.

My favorite Bible verse has been, ever since I can remember, “Husbands love your wives as Christ loved the church.” I mean, if we are honest, don’t we all love verses that benefit our lives in amazing ways? However, after ten years of having children entering adulthood, a close second, sometimes surpassing my number one verse, has become the Parents’ Prayer—Psalm 12:1—“Help, Lord.”

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