Before I go into my post let me give an update on the "why" question - Natalie and I talked and I explained that I get frustrated when she asks "why" and I don't know the answer, so we decided to work together to think of different questions she can ask. The last two days have been so much better, with her asking plenty of questions, but ones I could answer. We are both much more content, but I have seen it helping her because she is actually getting answers to the questions on her mind, which are very real and important to her.
Natalie has suddenly shown an interest in praying. We are letting her, but it raises questions in my mind. We have never required her to pray, or even required her to do any "motion" while we are praying. We simply require her to be quiet while we pray out of respect, but I feel that making her fold hands or bown her head could be making a little Pharasee out of her.
The question I have in my mind is this: Is it bad to let her pray when she is not yet born again? Am I teaching her to "go through the motions" before there is a genuine heart change?
She has asked a lot of questions about the gospel lately, and when we talk about it it is clear to me that she is not yet aware of her own sin or the magnitude of it, which I feel is fairly normal for a three year old. So in other words, she is not yet ready to "call upon the name of the Lord and be saved." Although she is learning. The other day I raised my voice at her out of anger and I later appologized and pointed out that what mommy had done was a sin, and that everyone sins and that is why Jesus had to die on the cross. Today I was in the basement and she was upstairs calling me. I could not stop what I was doing so I yelled that I would be there in a minute. She told me later "Mommy, you should not have yelled, that is a sin." So, I had to explain that yelling in anger is a sin, but sometimes you have to raise your voice so someone will be able to hear you.
So, is it wrong to let a child pray? I have decided it is not. If her heart wants to pray and thank the Lord for something, then I should let her. Jesus told us to come to Him with the faith of a child, and this is the beginnings of that faith. I do think this is a complicated theological question that I really do not know the answers to, but in my gut I feel like saying "no you can't pray" is wrong. I don't have a biblical reason for it, but it just feels wrong.
I love this child. I love watching her awareness of the gospel open up the older she gets. It sends me to my knees on a daily basis begging God for wisdom. While sunday school and children's clubs are important, I am realizing more and more that the majority of her Bible instruction will come from me, her mother. It is so humbling to realize that. Now I must sign off. My prayer closet is calling.
Mercy: Help When We Are Weak
6 months ago