“Parenting by prayer” by Paul E. Miller

“When our kids were two, five, eight, twelve, fourteen, and sixteen, I wrote this in my prayer journal:

March 19, 1991. Amazing how when I don’t pray in the morning evil just floods into our home. I absolutely must pray! Oh, God, give me the grace to pray.

It took me seventeen years to realize I couldn’t parent on my own. It was not a great spiritual insight, just a realistic observation. If I didn’t pray deliberately and reflectively for members of my family by name every morning, they’d kill one another. I was incapable of getting inside their hearts. I was desperate. But even more, I couldn’t change my self-confident heart. My prayer journal reflects both my inability to change my kids and my inability to change my self-confidence. That’s why I need grace even to pray…

It didn’t take me long to realize that I did my best parenting by prayer, I began to speak less to the kids and more to God. It was actually quite relaxing.”

–Paul E. Miller, A Praying Life (Colorado Springs, CO: NavPress, 2009), 59-60.

[HT: Miscellanies]

1 thought on ““Parenting by prayer” by Paul E. Miller

  1. This is one of my favourite quotes in what is a very encouraging book full of wonderful insights that really resonated with me. When my kids are angry at me or when they are angry at each other, I am a far more effective parent when I pray (either silently in my head or by removing myself from the situation) than when I try to fix things/them myself. My kids are 19, 17 and 12 and my biggest regret is that I talked more than I prayed. Thankfully it is never too late to learn.

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